Over the past couple of days, as many as four Real Madrid players ended up getting eliminated from the FIFA World Cup 2022 in Qatar.
On Thursday, Eden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois crashed out of the competition following Belgium’s goalless draw against Croatia. On the same night, Antonio Rudiger’s Germany were also out of the tournament despite winning their game versus Costa Rica.
Meanwhile, last night saw Federico Valverde’s Uruguay get eliminated from the World Cup as well, even though they won their game against Ghana.
And according to MARCA, the Real Madrid quartet will have a short holiday following their World Cup exits before they rejoin training with the club.
Furthermore, it is expected that all four players will be ready to face Real Valladolid on December 30 when Los Blancos resume their La Liga campaign.
Carlo Ancelotti has already reconvened training for players who did not travel to the World Cup, starting from December 1.
The likes of Toni Kroos, Nacho Fernandez, Lucas Vazquez, Alvaro Odriozola, and Dani Ceballos restarted training earlier this week to be ready for the resumption of the season.
David Alaba and Karim Benzema have been given a few days of additional leave following their international excursions and are expected to join the rest of the team shortly.
And soon after they will be joined by the aforementioned quartet of Rudiger, Valverde, Hazard and Courtois, who are now expected to be ready in time to face Real Valladolid.
Their availability for the game, in particular Valverde and Courtois, who have been in top form, will come as a boost for Ancelotti and Real Madrid, considering that they are already trailing Barcelona in the La Liga standings and cannot afford any slip-ups.
UFC Champion to kick off Real Madrid vs Sevilla, sends message to Mbappe: “Lucky to play for the best club in the world”
Coming on the back of his triumph at UFC, Featherweight champion Ilia Topuria has announced he will take honorary kick-off in the upcoming Real Madrid vs Sevilla in La Liga this weekend.
Topuria confirmed this in a recent press conference in the Spanish capital this midweek.
A self-proclaimed Madridista, Topuria expressed his deep connection with the club and even sent a message to Kylian Mbappe, who is widely expected to join the club on a free transfer this summer.
Ilia Topuria: A hardcore Madridista
Ilia Topuria did not hold back his affection for Real Madrid, stating, “For me, the team that represents the values of Spain the most is Real Madrid.”
The Georgian-Spaniard UFC champion went on to confirm that he will meet Florentino Perez on Sunday and take the kick-off.
“I’m going to meet Florentino Perez on Sunday and take the kick-off,” he said (h/t Mundo Deportivo).
Although born in Germany, Topuria made Spain proud last Saturday when he beat Alexander Volkanovski in the second round. In the process, he became the first fighter from Spain to capture a UFC belt.
Topuria’s triumph has granted him overnight success in Spain, with the 27-year-old even becoming a cultural icon for many.
Topuria’s message for Mbappe
Other than professing his love for Real Madrid, Ilia Topuria also had a message for Mbappe.
When asked about the Frenchman potentially joining Real Madrid this summer, he said, “Welcome. He’s lucky to play for the best club in the world.”
Real Madrid, for their part, also congratulated Topuria on his triumph. “Congratulations on your historic triumph for Spanish sport, Ilia Topuria. We are proud that a great Real Madrid fan like you becomes UFC world champion,” the club posted on X.
Real Madrid fans, meanwhile, will be excited to witness Topuria taking the honorary kickoff as Los Blancos take on Sevilla this weekend, with three crucial points on the line.