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REAL MADRID

Real Madrid injury status 12 days ahead of el Clásico

Following the international break and ahead of a run of three key fixtures which ends with Barcelona on 26 October, here is the injury status update for Real Madrid.

Real Madrid injury status 12 days ahead of el Clásico

Following the international break, Real Madrid’s travelling contingent will resume training ahead of the key week of fixtures which sees Zinedine Zidane’s side take on Mallorca (19/10), Galatasaray (22/10) and Barcelona (26/10).

The good news following the round of international fixtures is that Thibaut Courtois returned to action for Belgium after the gastroenteritis problems he suffered against Club Brugge a few weeks ago. However a worry for Zidane were the minor knocks picked up by Luka Modric and Gareth Bale.

Returned to fitness: Marcelo and Courtois

During the international break, Marcelo stayed at Madrid’s Valdebebas training ground to continue his recovery. The Brazilian had suffered a muscle injury in training last week but has returned to work as normal in a bid to prove himself fit for the visit of Mallorca.

Meanwhile, the aforementioned Courtois was a starter in Belgium’s two latest fixtures, demonstrating he has fully recovered from the gastro-problems that saw him come off at half time against Brugge and miss the last LaLiga fixture against Granada. Both he and Marcelo are expected to be starters against Mallorca on Saturday.

Doubts ahead of key week: Mendy, Bale, Modric, Kroos

The four doubts for Zidane ahead of the key week of fixtures are Ferland Mendy, Bale, Modric and Toni Kroos.

French defender Mendy was still unable to participate with the group in Madrid’s last session before the international break on 11 October. Although he managed some ball work last week and is close to returning to training as normal, he remains a doubt for the clash with Mallorca.

Modric hobbled off in the Wales-Croatia tie while Bale finished the game with twinges.

So too are the aforementioned Bale and Modric, who came up against each other in the Wales-Croatia tie on Sunday evening. Wales coach Ryan Giggs said Bale’s issue was nothing more than a cramp, while Modric suffered a slightly more serious knock. The Croatian had to be replaced while Bale managed to finish the game. Both players will be monitored throughout the week.

Kroos, meanwhile, remains the most serious doubt for Zidane. The German midfielder had to be replaced in the last league game against Granada due to a groin strain and has since been unable to train with his team mates. The 29-year-old is the only of the four who seems a real doubt for all three upcoming fixtures.

Given the three possible casualties in midfield, James Rodriguez, who did not travel for international duty and remained under Zidane’s instruction at Valdebebas, appears to be the main alternative for the French coach. Some minor inconveniences kept him in training in the gym last week but he is expected to be ready to start for Zidane should he needed to be called upon for the three upcoming games.

Nacho and Asensio, long-term injuries

Nacho and Marco Asensio are currently the only long-term injuries for Zidane. Nacho will remain side-lined for several more weeks with a knee injury, while Asensio is not expected to return until February at the earliest following his ACL rupture in the pre-season.