Real Madrid News
Boost for Real Madrid as Barcelona winger is an injury doubt for El Clasico
Real Madrid collapsed to a vulnerable Barcelona side last week in the first leg of the Copa del Rey semifinal at the Santiago Bernabeu. With Pedri, Robert Lewandowski and Ousmane Dembele all missing the clash, the game was seen as a missed opportunity.
The next Clasico is scheduled to take place in less than two weeks’ time at Spotify Camp Nou in La Liga. This time, however, the situation will be different Lewandowski and Pedri are likely to be available for selection.
Both are almost guaranteed starters against the Merengues on March 19. However, Mundo Deportivo reports that Dembele’s presence against Real Madrid is not assured.
Barcelona’s initial plan was to recover the Frenchman in training this week and give him minutes at the weekend versus Athletic Club to ensure he is fit to start the Clasico. However, the club doctors have halted the plan in fear of a relapse, thus complicating his participation on March 19th.
Los Blancos sit nine points behind Barcelona with 24 league games played so far. No team in the history of La Liga has overcome such a big gap to win the league, and Carlo Ancelotti’s men must turn around their poor form if they hope to be the first to do so.
A defeat against Barcelona would almost end the title race in Spain and put the men in white in a state of a psychological disadvantage even in the Copa del Rey. Conversely, a Clasico win would do wonders for the team’s confidence.
Dembele’s absence is thus promising news for Real Madrid in the buildup to next week’s game. Yet, one knows that the defending champions’ problems lately have been in the final third and not the defence.
Real Madrid News
Manchester City join race to sign €40 million-rated Real Madrid target
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.