Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has welcomed the return to training of Isco, Nacho, Luka Modric and Mateo Kovacic as Los Blancos continue their preparations for the long-expected trip to Barcelona on Saturday (April 2). However, the club have revealed that Sergio Ramos couldn't complete the whole training session with his teammates just four days before El Clasico.
Zidane's side appear resigned to not winning the La Liga title this season as they are 10 points behind the Catalans in the table with just eight games remaining. Yet, Los Blancos will go to the Nou Camp in search for a much-needed victory to respond to the 4-0 humiliation suffered at the Santiago Bernabeu earlier this season when current Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez was still in charge.
The second El Clasico of La Liga will come at an inopportune time for both sides as Zidane and Luis Enrique have been forced to prepare for the match without most of their first-team players due to the international break. Furthermore, the Real Madrid manager and his counterpart also have in mind their respective Champions League quarter finals first-legs against Wolfsburg and Atletico Madrid, due to be played next week.
Yet, it looks that Zidane will have most of his Real Madrid first-team players for the game in a season which his side have been hit by recurrent injuries. Gareth Bale, for instance, will arrive to Barcelona game fresh after he was rested by Wales after he just returned to action for Real Madrid earlier this month following a long-time on the side-lines. The Welshman, this way, has been training alongside other key stars like Dani Carvajal, Karim Benzema or Marcelo who also missed the international duty. Meanwhile, Casemiro is also back in training despite last week he was force to miss some training sessions due to some minor fitness problems.
Real Madrid, meanwhile, have now confirmed through a statement in its official website that on Tuesday morning (March 29) that Zidane also had his Spanish and Croatian internationals back in training to prepare for El Clasico. However, Ramos couldn't complete the whole session after the captain was withdrawn from Spain's squad for a friendly against Romania on Sunday due to a problem in his back.
"The team completed the second training session of the week at the Real Madrid City. The Whites continue to prepare for the match against Barcelona on Saturday (8:30pm CEST). Zidane is beginning to get players back from international duty. Isco, Nacho, Modric and Kovacic returned to the group. Sergio Ramos completed the first part of the session with the group before continuing to work indoors," Real Madrid confirmed four days before their game against Barcelona.
Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe, Toni Kross, Danilo, Keylor Navas, Raphael Varane and James Rodriguez remain on international duty as they have games to play on Tuesday night.