Real Madrid: Bale, Asensio, Keylor, Mariano back for Girona
Real Madrid boss Santiago Solari has got almost his entire squad back as he faces Girona, Alavés, Atlético and Ajax in quick succession.
Real Madrid manager Santiago Solari has been a little short of personnel in recent weeks with injuries to several key players hampering his selection but the Argentinean received good news on Wednesday with the return to training of the final pieces of his injury-plagued squad.
Having started 2019 with just Marcos Llorente, Mariano and Marcos Asensio unavailable, Solari watched as Thibaut Courtois, Keylor Navas, Jesús Vallejo, Javi Sánchez, Toni Kroos, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale all succumbed to one injury or another during January.
Now, with a glut of key games coming up in quick succession, Solari was able to announce an almost fully fit squad ahead of the Copa del Rey return leg at Girona on Thursday, where Real take a 4-2 advantage into the game.
“The best news is that practically all of the players are now training and are available. That means the squad will be more competitive and that's healthy for the team. Only Vallejo remains out sidelined.” Solari said in his pre-match press conference.
Solari can shuffle the pack against Girona
Solari now has the opportunity to rotate, with practically a new front line available overnight with the return of Mariano, who has been out since November, Bale and Asensio.
At the back Solari is also spoiled for choice and can afford to rest Dani Carvajal in favour of Álvaro Odriozola in Montilivi while perhaps giving Sánchez another run-out.
After the Copa return, Real face Alavés, who lie fifth in LaLiga and Atlético in the derby before travelling to Ajax in the first leg of the Champions League last 16 on February 13.