REAL MADRID

Anxiety within Madrid squad at return to activity without vaccine

There is a degree of internal scepticism at the club with the proposed return to activity plan as outlined by LaLiga.

Anxiety within Madrid squad at return to activity without vaccine
OSCAR DEL POZO AFP

There is a palpable level of scepticism within the Real Madrid camp following the latest guidelines outlined by LaLiga in the steps to a return to competitive activity. The Spanish governing body have suggested that every player and key club personnel should be tested on 28 April before resuming training. Real Madrid are anxious not to return to training until after the May-day holiday or even later in the month.

Club officials believe that Javier Tebas is trying to deal with a complicated situation in a conscientious manner and will comply with the wishes of LaLiga with the underlying condition that none of the players or staff are exposed to a health hazard. At present and without a vaccine available to combat the Covid-19 virus there will be always an element of risk and the club are faced with a dilemma of proceeding with the LaLiga protocol or make a stand on health grounds. A return to work for the first team will also see a return for cooks, gardeners, doctors, fitness staff, security and kit-men with more than 60 auxiliary staff working on the days when the Valdebebas training camp is open.

Economic pressure

From a financial perspective, there is also pressure on the club to see LaLiga return despite a series of outstanding doubts about the latest proposal from the league with questions being raised about the mechanics of carrying out the daily routine tests. Certain doubts also exist on the protocol should any member of the squad or backroom staff test positive and how that would impact on any return. The matter of a positive test on a member of the first team squad once the league campaign has resumed is another area of concern that has been raised.

Logistical queries are another area of concern said to be generating apprehension among the club hierarchy with answers yet outstanding as to the practical concerns on a match day relating to travel and accommodation for both home and away games.