Madrid’s laboured victory over Malaga on Saturday came with a price seeing both Marcelo and Luka Modric forced off with muscular problems.
The Los Blancos were faced with
another setback right away, with Real turning in a subdued performance in last week’s Copa del Rey first-leg loss to Celta, but there were mitigating circumstances. The injuries to Marcelo and Modric mean that Madrid are presently without six potential first-teamers, with Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez, Dani Carvajal and Pepe also all currently sidelined. Even a side of Real’s ample resources are going to struggle without so many internationals.
Real certainly need all the help they can get right now, as they enter a crucial juncture of their bid to win a first Liga title since 2012 and become the first side since AC Milan in 1990 to retain the European Cup.
Furthermore, on Wednesday, they must travel to Galicia and overturn a 2-1 deficit from their first-leg meeting with Celta. It is an onerous task. Madrid undoubtedly need Benzema and Ronaldo back at their best but, as Zidane quite rightly pointed out at the weekend, he has bigger concerns right now.