As Real Madrid gear up for their first home game of the 2023/24 season against Getafe tomorrow, manager Carlo Ancelotti has released the squad list for the game.
There is one new face in the squad as Ancelotti has called up 19-year-old Castilla striker Gonzalo Garcia to the senior setup for the first time ever given that the attack is stretched thin after Vinicius Jr’s injury.
Fellow youngster Nico Paz also earns a call-up to the squad for the clash against Getafe and will be waiting to make his official first-team debut for Los Blancos.
There are no other surprise selections in the squad while Real Madrid continue to be without Dani Ceballos and Ferland Mendy, who are still not ready for a return. Thibaut Courtois, Eder Militao, and Arda Guler are also absent due to injuries.
Interestingly, Alvaro Odriozola, who has been heavily linked with an exit, has been named in the squad, indicating that there may be no deadline day exit for the right-back.
Real Madrid starlet will not return from injury till November – reports
Life at Real Madrid has gotten off to a rather torrid start for Turkish starlet Arda Guler, who has already faced a large number of setbacks since singing for Los Blancos.
Aged just 18, the winger-slash-midfielder has already picked up seven injuries in his senior career, which is cause for serious concern, especially since a couple of them have affected his ligaments – which is always bad news.
Hotly-tipped to be an exciting addition to the Madrid squad going forward, the youngster had to drop out of their pre-season tour early due to a meniscus injury.
This was treated conservatively, but after that did not yield good results, he had to undergo a procedure and seemed set to make the squad against Las Palmas, before another injury setback.
According to Diario AS, the new problem can keep him out for three weeks to a month, which means his Real Madrid debut may have to wait till early November, after the first El Clasico of the season on 28th October.
Guler’s history of fitness problems
In their report, AS also state that the Turkish teenager seems to have a propensity for injuries, accumulating seven of them in his career already.
There is also word going around that his recovery from this meniscus issue was rushed and not handled adequately.
That, combined with a stroke of bad luck means Real Madrid have to be very mindful of how Guler is reintegrated into the squad going forward.
This new injury is reportedly a thigh problem which will also need to be treated with caution.
A special recovery plan
Carlo Ancelotti stated before and after the Las Palmas clash that the plan was for Guler to have some minutes against the Canary Islanders, but he said that genetics, luck and a lack of sharpness have a big part to play in this relapse.
The Italian manager did say that this issue is not as serious, but all signs indicate that there is an urgent need to work on the youngster’s conditioning.
AS thus say that a specific plan has been devised since the summer to enhance Guler’s fitness and his resistance.
This is a programme that is reportedly similar to the one Rodrygo followed when he arrived from Brazil, much thinner than he is today, but without having sacrificed his football qualities.