The Sick Room Gets Empty for the Derby

The Sick Room Gets Empty for the Derby


Real Madrid try to leave the crisis behind triggered by the two defeats in La Liga and the Champions League against Tottenham Hotspur. Zinedine Zidane keeps saying that the situation is not than harsh, but Los Blancos are 8 points behind the leaders, FC Barcelona. At least, the team could beat UD Las Palmas in the last game and now they have two weeks to rest and prepare the next game, the first derby at Wanda Metropolitano.

This game against Atlético Madrid, who is also struggling this season, might affect the whole year. Los Blancos need to win and wait for Barcelona to lose points against CD Leganés. Luckily, Zinedine Zidane will have available most of his players with the exception of Mateo Kovacic.

Gareth Bale, Raphael Varane, Keylor Navas and Daniel Carvajal should be back to the pitch on Saturday against Atlético Madrid and three of them could even start the game. Keylor Navas got injured with his national team and he had problems again after his great game against Tottenham Hotspur at Bernabéu. Kiko Casilla has replaced him, but the difference of quality between both is quite big.

Even more important is Carvajal’s return. The right back has been out of the team for two months after being diagnosed with a problem in the periocardium. He’s been resting this time and little by little going back to the training ground, because it’s not recommended to rush in these situations. Real Madrid supporters are missing him, because Nacho Fernández or Achraf cannot cover his gap. Varane, out the last two games, is also available and he has travelled with the French national team.

Gareth Bale should also be available, although he should have minutes in the second half and wait for his opportunity. The Welshman got injured at Dortmund and, since then, he’s been unable to play a single game. Real Madrid also need the best Bale to face this season.

Therefore, if any of the players get injured with their national teams, only Mateo Kovacic will be absent at Wanda Metropolitano. The Croatian midfielder has been unavailable most of the season and hopefully he can be back soon because he’s the perfect replacement for Toni Kroos or Luka Modric.