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Doubts remain over Bale and Benzema before window closes

In Real Madrid's 2-2 draw against Valencia on Sunday, both players were booed by the Madrid faithful, and in the absence of Ronaldo, it was Asensio who provided the attacking spark.

Gareth Bale y Karim Benzema.
Eduardo CandelDiario AS

"Anything can happen between now and 31 August," is the message Zinedine Zidane has reiterated over the summer, and with just four days left until the transfer window closes (in Spain clubs can sign players until Friday 1 September) there remains the possibility of some last-minute business. 


Gareth Bale's and Karim Benzema's poor performances at the start of the season have disappointed a large faction of Madrid supporters, and only Asensio has provided any attacking thrust in the absence of Cristiano Ronaldo. Neither Bale nor Benzema have managed to shine and convince in leading the attack, and against Valencia in Sunday's 2-2 draw both were roundly booed by the Madrid fans. However, it was Bale's performance and his inability to fit into Madrid's style of play that drew the most criticism and forced his substitution in the 73rd minute.  

Decisions, decisions

With both players flattering to deceive, debates now surround the Real squad and the possibility that they need to bolster their attack, particularly after the summer exits of Morata, James and Mariano, with only Mayoral coming in to provide reinforcements. With the sale of Bale and Benzema all but ruled out, Zidane has four days to weigh up the situation and decide whether fresh blood in the number 9 position is really necessary.

Carlo Ancelotti faced a similar situation three years ago when Benzema went through a similar loss of form, in the summer of 2014. In the end, Los Blancos decided to bring in Chicharito on loan, a move which was widely considered a success. 

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