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Benzema set to miss Girona clash, doubt for UCL match vs Celtic; Valverde returns – report



Photo by JANEK SKARZYNSKI/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid have received an injury blow ahead of their La Liga encounter against Girona as star striker Karim Benzema is missing from team training and looks set to miss the clash.

This update comes from SPORT, with the report claiming that Benzema is absent from today’s training session.

The 34-year-old striker has missed the last two matches against Sevilla and RB Leipzig due to ‘muscle fatigue’.

While he did participate in the first half of training on Friday, he has not been seen today, casting clouds of uncertainty over his involvement in Sunday’s encounter.

The report is suggesting that the French international will not only miss the Girona contest but could also be a doubt for next week’s UEFA Champions League encounter against Celtic as well.

But there is some good news though as Federico Valverde is back in team training ahead of Sunday’s match.

Valverde picked up an injury during Real Madrid’s last La Liga encounter against Sevilla and ended up missing their UEFA Champions League clash versus RB Leipzig earlier this week.

On Friday, the Uruguayan had trained by himself and as a result, there were doubts over his involvement against Girona tomorrow. But his participation in team training today could indicate that the 24-year-old should be in contention for the match.

Luka Modric Dani Ceballos and Mariano Diaz have all returned to training as well, handing Real Madrid further boosts.

But, Mario Cortegana is reporting that along with Benzema, Rodrygo was not spotted in training today either, as he is suffering from a mild illness.

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Real Madrid News

Manchester City join race to sign €40 million-rated Real Madrid target



Photo by Octavio Passos/Getty Images

Manchester City have now joined the ever-growing list of admirers for Celta Vigo midfielder and Real Madrid target Gabri Veiga, reports Jack Gaughan of the Daily Mail.

The 20-year-old midfielder has emerged as one of the breakout stars of La Liga this season, having impressed with his goalscoring abilities from the centre of the park. Indeed, the youngster has notched up nine goals in La Liga and his exploits have made the giants of Europe sit up and take notice.

Real Madrid are said to be interested in Veiga’s services heading into the summer. The Merengues have Luka Modric, Toni Kroos, and Dani Ceballos on expiring contracts and it is unlikely that all three will be renewed, especially with Jude Bellingham being on the agenda.

In case of Modric and Kroos, even if they stay, it will likely be for only a season at the most. Hence, Los Blancos could require more than one central midfielder come summer, with Veiga emerging as an option.

The 20-year-old was also attracting interest from the likes of Arsenal, Manchester United and Atletico Madrid. Now, Manchester City have also jumped on the bandwagon of clubs interested in Veiga’s services.

The Cityzens, who are battling Real Madrid for Bellingham as well, are set to lose Ilkay Gundogan in the summer when his contract expires. Meanwhile, Bernardo Silva’s future is also far from certain, thus necessitating the signing of another midfielder.

Veiga has a release clause worth €40 million in his contract with Celta Vigo, which should not be a problem for either Real Madrid or Manchester City.

Celta Vigo president Carlos Mourino recently admitted that the midfielder could leave the club in the summer, saying:

“We don’t want to sell Gabri Veiga, but they are going to buy him from us. And we can’t do anything there. We know some of his offers and it is impossible to reach them.

“There are several teams behind Gabri. Real Madrid? They haven’t asked us, we don’t know if they will have called the player. Of the top 10 in the Premier League, four have asked about him.”

It will certainly be interesting to see whether Real Madrid are prepared to go all out for Veiga’s signing or decide to entirely focus on their pursuit of Bellingham.

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