Luka Modric hands Real Madrid injury blow ahead of Man City Champions League semi-final clash
- Croatian nursing thigh complaint
- May miss Copa del Rey final
- Doubtful for crunch European tie
WHAT HAPPENED? Los Blancos are due to face the Premier League title holders at the semi-final stage of elite European competition, with the Spanish heavyweights looking to successfully defend their continental crown. The first leg of that eagerly-anticipated encounter is due to take place at the Santiago Bernabeu on May 9, with Modric facing a race against time to put himself in contention for selection. That is because the veteran Croatian playmaker has picked up a thigh problem that is threatening to keep him sidelined for the foreseeable future.
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WHAT THEY SAID: Real boss Carlo Ancelotti has said when offering on update on Modric, who was forced off during a 4-2 victory over Girona last time out: “He has had a small injury and it depends on how it evolves. I don’t know if he will reach the Cup final, we must evaluate him. We are hurt, but it can happen. I hope he recovers.”
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Real are due to face Almeria on Saturday, before then tackling Real Sociedad on Tuesday and Osasuna in the Copa del Rey final on May 6. Ancelotti has said of being forced to shuffle his midfield pack with Modric out: “In terms of characteristics, it is [Dani] Ceballos, but we have different resources, we have very good midfielders like [Aurelien] Tchouameni, [Eduardo] Camavinga in order to replace Luka. He’s a very important player, nobody can replace him in terms of experience in these types of games, but I won’t complain, because we have midfielders of the highest level.”
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WHAT NEXT? Madrid are desperate to get their hands on major silverware over the coming weeks as they currently sit 11 points adrift of Clasico rivals Barcelona in the Liga title race and appear destined to relinquish that prize.