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Shakhtar Donetsk manager jokes about Real Madrid resting Luka Modric for UCL clash



Photo by Christian Hofer/Getty Images

Luka Modric was one of the few Real Madrid players who had picked up a knock during the international break.

Although the midfielder featured in both the matches against Denmark and Austria, he returned to Santiago Bernabeu with muscle overload. He was subsequently ruled out for a period of up to ten days.

However, it has been recently revealed that Modric might be fit for tomorrow’s UEFA Champions League encounter against Shakhtar Donetsk.

Reacting to the news, Shakhtar manager Igor Jovicevic voiced his disapproval over the prospect of Modric starting the game tomorrow and urged Carlo Ancelotti to rest the veteran midfielder for the upcoming El Clasico.

“I’m glad Luka Modric is fine for tomorrow, but I would have preferred him not to play. Rest him for El Clasico,” he said, as quoted by Melchor Ruiz.

Real Madrid are slated to face FC Barcelona less than a fortnight from now, in what could be a significant tie in the context of the title race. However, Los Blancos are due to play three games before they meet their arch-rivals, two of which are against Shakhtar.

Speaking ahead of the game, Ancelotti himself dismissed any real possibility of Modric starting against Donetsk tomorrow, stating: “I’m not sure if he will start tomorrow.”

Modric, for his part, is coming on the back of a gruelling international break and subsequent muscle fatigue. Hence, the likelihood of him starting against Shakhtar remains low, although the veteran will certainly look to get back into the thick of things when Real Madrid meet Getafe later this weekend.

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid not worried about Bellingham’s knee injury, Dortmund asking for €150 million



Photo by Christof Koepsel/Getty Images

Heading into the 2023 summer transfer window, Real Madrid had one main priority on their minds – signing Jude Bellingham from Borussia Dortmund amidst interest from several other parties involved.

With Manchester City, Chelsea, Manchester United, and Liverpool also chasing his signature, Madrid knew it was going to take a lot more than just a €120 million offer and a blank cheque to convince Bellingham.

Eventually, it seems the player’s desire to join Madrid came through. He rejected advances from the Premier League, and eventually chose the defending Champions League winners as his next home.

There are certainly doubts with the transfer, though, as there would be, with any €120 million signing. With this transfer, it is Bellingham’s knee troubles. The Englishman might have to undergo surgery to treat his knee, and is also expected to miss England’s EURO 2024 qualifiers.

A knee surgery at the age of 19 would, and probably should be a scary prospect for any player and club. Real Madrid, though, are not worried, as per a report by SPORT1.

They want him to form a ‘royal midfield’ quadrant with Aurelien Tchouameni, Eduardo Camavinga, and Federico Valverde.

The transfer is expected to close next week, as Borussia Dortmund advanced negotiations with Real Madrid after losing the Bundesliga title on the final matchday.

The two club presidents, Hans-Joachim Watzke and Florentino Perez, have a ton of mutual respect for one another, and want the transfer to be closed promptly so both clubs can move forward with the rest of the transfer window.

For Dortmund, that means finding a replacement for Bellingham, and reinforcing their squad to challenge for the Bundesliga title next season. For Madrid, meanwhile, it would mean finding Karim Benzema’s replacement.

The final details of the transfer fee are still remaining, though, with Dortmund hoping to get nearly €150 million out of the deal.

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