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Key Atletico Madrid superstar could recover in time for derby, three players doubtful

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Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

The Madrid Derby is now the talk of the town as both Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid gear up for their biggest game of the season yet. While Los Rojiblancos need all three points more than their neighbours, Real Madrid are the favourites heading into the clash.

Diego Simeone would ideally want to have his strongest lineup to face the defending champions but faces an acute injury crisis. Jose Maria Gimenez, Jan Oblak, Stefan Savic and Thomas Lemar are out injured and doubtful for the weekend’s game.

According to journalist Pablo Egea, Oblak is the only player who could recover in time to face Real Madrid. Everything indicates that the other three players on the list will not receive the medical all-clear before the key clash.

This comes as a big blow to Simeone’s plans as all three players are a vital part of his starting lineup. In their absence, it appears that he might have to play Axel Witsel out of position to cover the holes in the defence.

Apart from the aforementioned trio, Sergio Reguilon is also unavailable as he continues to recover from his groin issue.

Yet, one must note that Atletico Madrid are not the only team missing key players for the derby. Carlo Ancelotti too will be without the services of Karim Benzema and Lucas Vazquez on the night.

The game will kick off at the Civitas Metropolitano late on Sunday night. While the objective for Real Madrid will be to keep their winning streak alive, Los Rojiblancos will do everything possible to claw their way up the standings after a shaky start.

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Atletico Madrid News

Ancelotti talks Courtois, Militao, Bellingham, VAR controversies ahead of Las Palmas vs Real Madrid

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Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

Coming off a highly controversial game against Almeria, Real Madrid will now travel to Gran Canaria to take on Las Palmas tomorrow as part of the early kick-off.

Carlo Ancelotti spoke about the clash tomorrow, starting off by confirming his goalkeeper for tomorrow, “Lunin will start tomorrow.”

He also added that Madrid were looking to get back to their usual level after back-to-back poor performances, one of which included elimination against Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey round of 16.

“We are motivated to return to our best level after 2 bad games.”

The Italian gaffer also commented on the biggest football story in the world today, which was Jurgen Klopp announcing his decision to leave Liverpool at the end of the season.

“It’s quite surprising, I understand. Working for a long time with the same club and players lowers your motivation a bit. He’s doing a fantastic job at Liverpool.”

And of course, Ancelotti also spoke about the leaked VAR audiovisual, some of which are highly controversial for all parties involved. Barcelona coach and players have also commented on the same, in light of the Negreira case.

“They have talked a lot. Everyone knows what has happened in the last 20 years in Spanish football. The Civil Guard is carrying out an investigations. That is the real problem of Spanish football.”

Luckily for the manager and fans, all injured players — minus the ACL trio of David Alaba, Eder Militao, and Thibaut Courtois — are available. Jude Bellingham is suspended, however.

“Everyone is available now after the recent period of injuries.”

“Making up for Bellingham’s absence tomorrow? Brahim and Joselu are available options. They were able to show themselves after I relied on them as substitutes,” he added.

And as far as Militao and Courtois are concerned, both of whom tore their ACL early in the season, Ancelotti suggested that they could make their return before the season ends.

“Courtois and Militão both have the option to play this season. The recovery process is going very well, they are training on an individual level. It is February and these types of injuries last 6-8 months, so I think they will recover before the end of the season.”

Source: Mundo Deportivo

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