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REAL MADRID

Zidane and Real Madrid benefit from the international break

Marcelo, Mendy and James have been given the chance to recover and Zidane has been doing specific work with the rest of the players at Valdebebas.

Zidane está trabajando con tranquilidad en este 'Virus FIFA': puede recuperar jugadores y trabajar con los no convocados.
PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU AFP

Football managers generally don't enjoy the risk that comes with an international break. During the current break, Real Madrid lost 12 players to their respective national teams but Zidane is content. He hasn't lost as many players as usual and some of those who remained in Madrid can work in Valdebebas on fitness and specific tactics for the next week.

Players like Marcelo, James and Mendy have recovered sufficiently from injury and are now available for the remainder of October. Real Madrid have three away games this month when they fly to Mallorca in LaLiga, Turkey to play Galatasaray in the Champions League and then to the Camp Nou for the first Clásico of the season. 

The two left-backs are available for the upcoming game in LaLiga and they have taken advantage of the international break to recover and sharpen their fitness. James is another player available to Zidane after staying in Spain for the international break to help with his minutes in the team. The outlook on Kroos' availability for the Clásico is not as optimistic, however, after he was taken off against Granada in the 34th minutes. He is out for between two and three weeks which leaves his spot in the team for the Camp Nou clash in serious doubt.

Zidane working Real Madrid players hard at training

The other players who were called up for their national teams have been working hard at Valdebebas. Zidane doesn't want them to slacken off despite the fact that there are no games. On aspect he is working on is the forward player. And for that, he has Benzema, Jovic and Mariano. He even threw on his boots to join in training as things calm down for a few days at the training ground.

Another positive aspect for Zidane and Real Madrid is that players like Courtois and Bale have gone with their national teams. No longer are they under scrutiny in Madrid. They tend to be more relaxed around their own compatriots and the change of scenery tends to help them. Everything is lined up for the next run of games provided the other 12 return healthy and ready for an assault on LaLiga and the Champions League.