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Official: Courtois injured in training, Lunin to start for Real Madrid against Mallorca



Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Real Madrid have made a late change to their starting XI for the game against RCD Mallorca as goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has picked up an injury while training, according to an official update.

The Belgian international, who has been the undisputed starter between the sticks for Carlo Ancelotti, was going through the warm-ups before kick-off and walked off the pitch after feeling some discomfort in his left leg.

With Courtois walking off the pitch, backup goalkeeper Andriy Lunin continued to warm up and is all set to start against Mallorca.

The 23-year-old has previously filled in for Courtois on several occasions this season, playing seven times in all competitions in which he has kept three clean sheets.

Now, at a crucial juncture of the season, at which point Real Madrid cannot afford to drop any points, Lunin must step into Courtois’ shoes and provide a strong shield at the back for the team.

As for Courtois’ situation, Mario Cortegana of The Athletic has reported that the Belgian will undergo tests on his discomfort in the left abductor tomorrow.

With the FIFA Club World Cup coming up next week, Real Madrid will be hoping that the goalkeeper’s injury is not serious and he will be back in action swiftly, especially with Eder Militao and Karim Benzema already out on the sidelines.

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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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