Zinedine Zidane had mixed injury news before Real Madrid face Leganes, with Luka Modric’s return balancing out the loss of Karim Benzema.
Zinedine Zidane will be without striker Karim Benzema as Real Madrid look to respond to a near seismic Champions League shock against Leganes in LaLiga.
Mateo Kovacic’s 85th-minute goal salvaged a 3-3 draw for the European champions in Poland on Wednesday after Madrid had thrown away an early 2-0 lead.
Zidane paired Benzema and Alvaro Morata in attack as part of a bold 4-2-4 formation that critics believe left Madrid exposed, however, the French coach will not repeat the system when Leganes head from the Madrid suburbs to the Santiago Bernabeu.
Zidane told a news conference: “Karim will not play tomorrow. He has some problems after the game in Poland.
“It’s just a slight niggle, we’re not going to risk a player who has some sort of slight injury.”
In more positive news for Zidane, however, playmaker Luka Modric is likely to play a part against the promoted side after missing the last seven games with a knee injury.
Zidane added: “Luka Modric is with us, he is in the squad.
“He may have some minutes, let’s see. The important thing is that he’s OK, he’s completely recovered from his injury, that is the most important thing for me and everyone.”
Leganes have picked up nine points from a possible 15 on the road in the maiden LaLiga season, and Zidane is expecting a tough test, despite Madrid enjoying a 27-match unbeaten run in all competitions.
He added: “We know tomorrow is a difficult game, it will be complicated.
“Away from home, they play very well. They know how to play so we have to be at the top of our concentration, we have to play a serious game.”