Real Madrid’s Alaba doubtful for return leg against City
The Austrian centre-back’s abductor problems persist and he is a serious doubt for City’s visit. Casemiro should be fit for the second leg.
Real Madrid returned to the training ground on Thursday morning with some positive news - Casemiro, who missed the Champions League semi-final first leg at the Etihad returned to full training. It remains to be seen whether Ancelotti will give him some playing time at the end of Saturday’s league meeting with Espanyol - with Madrid requiring just one point to be crowned LaLiga champions. The midfielder is unlikely to feature from the start against the Pericos but club sources says that he will be back at full strength for next week’s return leg against Manchester City.
It wasn’t all good news though. David Alaba is back to square one with his abductor issues. The problems he has been having with his right abductor flared up in Manchester during the first leg and once again he will be doubtful right up until the day of Wednesday’s decider. The Austrian centre-back was in the starting XI at the Etihad, but had to be substituted and was replaced by Nacho at half-time.
The morning session in Valdebebas focused on recovery for those who played the City game - players alternated between light work out on the practice pitches and exercises inside the gym. Ancelotti also has Mariano back - the forward is another option for the Espanyol game. Luka Jovic however, is still continuing with his recovery and won’t be back in time to make the list.
Madrid need one point to wrap up LaLiga
With the team trailing their Champions League tie against City and needing just one
point from the remaining five games to clinch the league title, Ancelotti is expected to rest most of his first team regulars when Espanyol visit the Bernabéu this weekend. The club have their title-winning celebrations already planned for Cibeles. Players such as Vallejo, Marcelo, Isco and Ceballos could be on the team list against Espanyol, who travel to the capital in 13th position but relatively safe from the drop - nine points clear of the relegation places.