Zinedine Zidane, Real Madrid, Football, La Liga, Barcelona

Zinedine Zidane, Real Madrid

Football: Crunch fortnight leaves creaking Real Madrid little margin for error

Football: Crunch fortnight leaves creaking Real Madrid little margin for error

2/4/2021 3:42:00 PM

Football : Crunch fortnight leaves creaking Real Madrid little margin for error

MADRID: Real Madrid play Eibar on Saturday (Apr 3) at the start of a definitive fortnight in their season that will stretch a creaking squad and ...

SportReal Madrid defender Sergio Ramos injured his calf while on international duty with Spain. (Photo: AFP/Jorge Guerrero)02 Apr 2021 08:38PMShare this contentBookmarkMADRID: Real Madrid play Eibar on Saturday (Apr 3) at the start of a definitive fortnight in their season that will stretch a creaking squad and test Zinedine Zidane's dependence on his ageing stars.

Police investigating woman who allegedly disregarded repeated advice to wear mask at MBS Woman being investigated for not wearing a face mask at Marina Bay Sands 19 new community cases in Singapore, including 8 linked to Changi Airport cluster

Still with a shot at winning La Liga, Madrid know defeat by Barcelona next weekend would likely end their challenge, with Barca currently two ahead of them and Atletico a further four clear with 10 games left to play.AdvertisementAdvertisementAnd either side of the Clasico at Valdebebas will come two legs against Liverpool in the Champions League, where a kind semi-final draw of Porto or Chelsea will only be realised if Madrid can beat an opponent needing success in Europe to salvage their hugely disappointing season in England.

Real Madrid's focus cannot be so singular, even if the Champions League has stirred their emotions more vigorously in recent years than La Liga, which they won last term in part it seemed because there were no other distractions."Everything will be difficult," said Zidane before the international break."We have to take it a day at a time because one day people say we're up here, the next down there. We have to stay in the middle, knowing that our season is still alive and that we have to work hard to keep it that way." headtopics.com

There can be no letting up against either Liverpool or Barcelona, which is not a new scenario for a team used to playing climax games back to back at the business end of a season.AdvertisementAdvertisementRAMOS SIDELINED AGAINThe difference this time is the resources at Zidane's disposal, many of them tried and trusted, who with peak fitness and form would be picked without hesitation for a trio of crunch games like these. When the stakes are high, Zidane has preferred to change less.

His problem though is Madrid's go-to eleven may not be ready for the strain, with Sergio Ramos already ruled out of both games against Liverpool and the Clasico, expected missing for around a month with a calf injury sustained on international duty with Spain.

Toni Kroos returned from early from his attachment with Germany due to a muscle problem while Madrid may not have been thrilled to see the 35-year-old Luka Modric spared only 36 minutes of Croatia's three World Cup qualifiers against Slovenia, Cyprus and Malta.

AdvertisementKarim Benzema only came back last month from an adductor injury."I would like all the players to be healthy but unfortunately it is not the case," Zidane said on Friday.Zidane will have to decide whether to roll the dice or risk the kind of rotation that has regularly backfired this season, with Eibar hoping to profit. headtopics.com

UN chief 'deeply disturbed' by Israel strike on Gaza media building Short term visitors from South Asia make up fewer than 10 imported Covid-19 cases in last 28 days: MOH data 2-passenger limit for taxis, private-hire cars amid tightened Covid-19 restrictions

Atletico's last-16 loss to Chelsea means they can dedicate themselves completely to fixing their own stuttering form, which has included only four wins from their last 11 matches.They play away at fourth-placed Sevilla on Sunday night before Barcelona face Real Valladolid at Camp Nou on Monday.

Read more: CNA »

Wanted: Bengal tiger seen roaming Texas neighbourhood

WASHINGTON — Police in an upscale Texas neighborhood searched Tuesday (May 11) for a fugitive Bengal tiger that was seen roaming on lawns and streets until its apparent owner fled with the animal.

Football: Crunch time for La Liga's title race as contenders go head to headGerard Pique said that in any normal season, this weekend would decide La Liga 's champion, but even he admitted this time that there are no ...

After failed takeover, Air Transat seeks help as debt crunch loomsStruggling tour operator Air Transat is in talks with the federal government on aid but may not reach a deal by an April debt deadline, a source ...

India's COVID-19 oxygen crisis: Why is there a deadly crunch?A devastating surge in coronavirus infections has exposed India's dilapidated health infrastructure and a deep shortage of oxygen -- a key ...

India's Covid-19 oxygen crisis: why is there a deadly crunch?A devastating surge in coronavirus infections has exposed India's dilapidated health infrastructure and a deep shortage of oxygen -- a key treatment for seriously ill Covid-19 patients.