Real Madrid News
Official: Real Madrid defender ruled out of Atletico Madrid clash
After missing the last four games due to injury, David Alaba was included in Real Madrid’s squad list to take on Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey quarter-finals. Carlo Ancelotti, himself, confirmed the Austrian’s presence in the starting lineup, saying:
“Alaba will play tomorrow. Tchouaméni, Hazard, Carvajal and Lucas are out.”
However, as it turns out, Alaba has not returned from his injury in time, and is still out of the game, confirmed by an official statement released by Madrid.
“David Alaba won’t play tonight’s game against Atletico Madrid, the quarterfinals of the Copa del Rey. The defender is a last-minute absence for the clash,” the report said.
While the report does not confirm the reason, all signs point towards injury, which initially ruled him out for nearly a month.
Alaba last played for Madrid against Villarreal at the Estadio La Ceramica, where Los Blancos came out 2-1 losers, dropping from the top position in the league.
Real Madrid News
Canadian international says playing against Luka Modric was a ‘lesson’ for him
Real Madrid are blessed to have the services and loyalty of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos. The duo have run the show in the Merengues’ midfield for close to a decade and continue to deliver flawless performances to date.
Of the two, however, it is the Croatian who deserves the higher credit. The veteran is now 37 years of age, yet dominates the middle of the park with grace and poise like none other.
Stephen Estuaqio, an FC Porto player and Canada International, spoke earlier this week about why he considered Luka Modric to be a special player and compared him with Kevin de Bruyne to support his stance.
“I played against De Bruyne, but I ran behind Modrić. I couldn’t play against him. It’s crazy how he dictates the game and controls everything. It was a lesson for me,” he said on The 90th minute on Youtube.
With his contract running out next season, Real Madrid are looking to renew his deal by one year come June. Yet, it is difficult to see him continue beyond next season and his imminent departure will mark the end of an era at the club.
Thus, Modric could be an altered role come next season. With a young midfielder, possibly Jude Bellingham set to arrive, the veteran could move into a mentorship role with the occasional appearance in big games.
This season, however, Carlo Ancelotti will continue to use him as one of the backbones of the side and deploy the maestro in the must-win fixtures coming up later this month.
At 37 years of age, Modric has started 16 La Liga games over 24 appearances this season in the competition. He has scored four goals and provided three assists in that process in addition to creating eight big chances with an average of 1.8 key passes per game.