Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema resumed normal training after being out for more than three weeks as he was spotted doing the regular drills with the handful of internationals who returned from their national team commitments early.
As reported by Spanish publication Diario AS, it was the first time Benzema ‘stepped on the grass and touched a ball’ as part of the regular training process.
Benzema, alongside Lucas Vazquez, were training inside the facility after picking up injuries before the international break. And for the first time in three weeks, the star forward joined forces with the group in an attempt to achieve the match fitness.
Furthermore, although Benzema is now training normally, manager Carlo Ancelotti is expected to have some reservations as the French forward might take his due time before starting a game for Real Madrid.
Hence, as the team from the capital city prepares for a home clash against Osasuna, word is that Benzema might come on from the bench instead of starting. This is mostly due to the fact that he has not played a competitive game in 25 days.
The idea is to get him back into a competitive rhythm so that he could be available to start the next game, which is a home tie against Shakhtar Donetsk in the UEFA Champions League.
Interestingly enough, before sustaining an injury against Celtic, Benzema was the only outfield player, and only one among two Madrid players alongside Thibaut Courtois, to play each and every minute of action.
Against Celtic, however, Ancelotti was forced to take him off as he complained of knee discomfort. In turn, he went to miss his team’s next three games, a 4-1 win over Mallorca, a 2-0 win over RB Leipzig and a 2-1 derby victory over Atletico Madrid.
Real Madrid teenage prodigy needs to play more, insists national team manager
The situation with Arda Guler at Real Madrid has become tense in recent days. The Turkish phenom has not been at the receiving end of many minutes despite completing his recovery from injuries, and the player is now getting fed up with his situation.
It is, however, not just Guler who is affected by the situation. With the European Championships coming up, the 19-year-old looks likely to enter the competition with Turkey with no match fitness, and his international federation is far from happy with his situation.
Turkey manager speaks out
Speaking at the recent sponsorship event of the Turkish National Team, head coach Vincenzo Montella was asked to comment on Guler’s situation at Real Madrid.
As a former Sevilla coach and with knowledge of how La Liga works, he understood the circumstances and hoped for the player to see more minutes.
“He is playing very little, but I hope he can do it from now on because he has a lot of talent,” he said, as quoted by SPORT.
Montella went on to reinstate that he still maintains complete confidence in the Real Madrid star’s abilities for the upcoming tournament, despite his drought for minutes.
“We are following him very carefully. We want our players to be in their best physical condition for the European Championship.”
Exit on the cards?
Guler has played only 92 minutes all season and is now vexed by his helplessness. As revealed yesterday, he feels misguided and is unhappy with how the circumstances are currently.
The disappointed star, thus, could seek an exit, potentially on loan, from the club next summer if his situation does not improve.
But with Jude Bellingham and Brahim Diaz both on song, it does not appear like Guler’s chance in Madrid will arrive anytime soon.
Carlo Ancelotti retains faith in the Turkish star, and it remains to be seen if he looks to turn the player’s fortune around in the coming months.