Real Madrid have had their fair share of tussles in the injury department this season.
Carlo Ancelotti and Co. have done their very best to overshadow the injury plague with dominant performances and strong results.
But the fact is that Real Madrid have been riding the storm out for a large portion of the campaign, as the exclusions of key figures have not deterred the side from racking up points in all competitions.
Now, Mario Cortegana of The Athletic has come out to provide an update on the situation of Dani Ceballos and Ferland Mendy, who have endured a topsy-turvy season due to the infliction of injuries.
The 27-year-old’s pre-season injury has already caused him to miss a significant portion of the first half of the campaign.
Despite returning to the pitch for a few outings, he was forced to spend time on the sidelines once more with a microtear in the rectus muscle in his right leg.
Providing an update on his return, the report states he will not yet be ready to face Los Blancos’ next opponent, which is Rayo Vallecano.
Ceballos has missed Real Madrid’s last three games and was tipped to return for the clash versus Rayo, but precautions are being taken, and the Spaniard will simply have to bide his time further before making a comeback.
Ferland Mendy’s update
Ferland Mendy, who has already missed five games this season due to injury, suffered a muscular overload during last week’s El Clasico.
However, as per the report, the Frenchman did some individual work after fitness problems of his own but could train with the group on Saturday to boost his chances of being involved in Sunday’s match.
Over the past year or so, Mendy’s struggles at Real Madrid have prevented him from becoming a regular starter due to persistent fitness issues.
Therefore the left-back will be aiming to secure himself regular play time and put his injury concerns behind him once and for all.
In light of his recurrent injuries though, it has been reported that Real Madrid will put him up for sale in the January transfer window.
Official: Real Madrid starting lineup against Napoli | UCL GW 5
Real Madrid are back in the Champions League following their impressive win against Cadiz on the weekend as they host Napoli at the Santiago Bernabeu for gameweek five.
They have already secured qualification to the round of 16, and even a point today would secure first place in the group.
With several players still injured, Carlo Ancelotti has opted for his best available starting lineup, with Daniel Carvajal taking responsibility of the captain’s armband at right-back. He will be aided by Ferland Mendy, who starts on the other side.
Meanwhile, in between them, David Alaba returns to the fold as the starting centre-back, partnering Antonio Rudiger. This duo has the responsibility of screening Andriy Lunin, who continues in goal in Kepa and Thibaut Courtois’ absence.
With both Eduardo Camavinga and Aurelien Tchouameni out, Toni Kroos gets the chance to play as the holding midfielder for two games in a row. Federico Valverde retains his spot, as well, while Dani Ceballos comes in for the injured Luka Modric in central midfield.
Rodrygo will spearhead the team’s frontline as one of the two twin forwards, while Brahim Diaz gets the nod over Joselu. Jude Bellingham is the final, and arguably the most important piece of the puzzle, playing behind the front-two.
Confirmed Madrid XI: Lunin; Carvajal, Rudiger, Alaba, Mendy; Valverde, Kroos, Ceballos; Bellingham; Diaz, Rodrygo