Zidane barks instructions to his team
Zidane has called up his entire squad to face Atletico Madrid in Milan Getty Images

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane has included all his 22 first-team players in the travelling party for the Champions League final against Atletico Madrid at the San Siro on Saturday (28 May). Raphael Varane and Alvaro Arbeloa, both nursing injuries have made the trip to Milan as the club bids to win its 11th European crown.

The French boss has suffered some injury scares in recent days as the club finalised its preparations. Nevertheless, Los Blancos are yet to play any official games since ending their domestic campaign with a 12<sup>th consecutive La Liga victory over Deportivo de la Coruna on 14 May which proved insufficient to overhaul Barcelona for the title.

Lucas Vazquez was the only absentee in that final game after the Spanish international winger suffered a knee injury in the previous encounter with Valencia. The former Espanyol forward has since taken advantage of the time off to recover in time for the Champions League final.

However French centre-back Varane has been ruled out for both the Champions League final and European Championship after suffering a long-term injury with his thigh. Arbeloa on the other hand sustained a sprain in his left knee in the preparation for the final and is expected to miss what could have been his farewell to Real Madrid fans, as he leaves the Bernabeu this summer after his contract expires.

Both players will still have the chance to celebrate the title if Real Madrid beats Atletico Madrid on Saturday after Zidane included all his 22 first-team players in the squad with the exclusion of the likes of Borja Mayoral and other academy starlets, as the second team play a key game for promotion to the second division on Monday.


Cristiano Ronaldo also set the alarm bells ringing at the Santiago Bernabeu on Tuesday when he was forced to leave the training session earlier than expected after colliding with goalkeeper Kiko Casilla. The former Manchester United star then sparked further doubts over his participation in the final as he had previously being unable to complete training with the rest of his teammates on Friday and Saturday amid fears he still carried some niggles from the injury that saw him miss the first leg of the semi-final against Manchester City last month.

However, the Portuguese star was back in training on Wednesday and seems a dead cert for Zidane's XI gala on Saturday, with the 'BBC' formed by Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and Ronaldo leading the attack.