Ancelotti Confirms Militao Return After Injury


Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti confirmed Saturday defender Eder Militao is fit after injury and will be in the squad to face Athletic Bilbao.

The Brazilian centre-back has been out for over seven months, after suffering a long-term cruciate ligament injury against Athletic in the first match of the season.

Militao will likely be on the bench at the Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday when the league leaders face Ernesto Valverde’s high-flying side.

“Militao returns tomorrow, which is the most important news,” Ancelotti told a news conference.

“He’s available, he’s trained well, obviously he’s not 100 percent because he hasn’t played football, but he’s recovered very well from the injury.

“He was injured in the first game against Athletic and he’s back for the return, it’s very good news for us.”

Militao, 26, will be an option for Ancelotti when Manchester City visit on April 9 in the Champions League quarter-final first leg, barring any setbacks.

With defender David Alaba sidelined too, Madrid have got through the last few months with only two available natural centre-backs — Nacho Fernandez and Antonio Rudiger.

“What has happened to us is a bit strange,” said Ancelotti.

“I think we’ve shouldered it well, Rudiger is having a fantastic season, Nacho has brought a lot to the defence, although he’s made some mistakes.”

Despite Madrid’s defensive injury woes they have the best defence in Spain, conceding just 20 goals in 29 matches, six fewer than visitors Athletic who boast the second best record.

Defensive midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni has also filled in on occasion at the back to help plug the gap.

“The collective work has been very good, and it shows in that we are the team that’s let in the fewest goals,” added Ancelotti.

Madrid are without suspended star forward Vinicius Junior but top scorer Jude Bellingham returns after serving a ban.

The Brazilian winger has been in the spotlight this week after his emotional media appearance on Monday ahead of a friendly against Spain to combat racism.

Some figures, including former Paraguay goalkeeper Jose Luis Chilavert, have taken the opportunity to add to criticism of the forward’s behaviour on and off the pitch.

“There is one thing that worries me about Vinicius — that is tomorrow he can’t play,” said Ancelotti wryly.


Ignatius Igwe

An energetic journalist with an amazing sense of responsibility.

Disqus Comments Loading...

Recent Posts

NDLEA Intercepts Qatar-Bound Illicit Drugs Concealed In African Salad, Dried Vegetables

The suspect was said to be attempting to export the illicit drug to Doha, Qatar…

43 mins ago

SERAP Gives Sani, Wike, Others Ultimatum To Account For N5.9trn, $4.6bn Loans

SERAP's request also includes details and locations of projects executed with the loans.

1 hour ago

Pope Francis Pleads For Peace In Easter Message

Pope made the call in his Easter message in the Vatican on Sunday.

1 hour ago

Lawmaker Threatens Legal Action Against Air Peace Over Delays, Flight Disruptions

He said his planned legal action against the operator of the airline would address the…

2 hours ago

Bassirou Diomaye Faye, From Prison To President Of Senegal

The father-of-four was born into a modest family of farmers in remote Ndiaganiao, a village…

3 hours ago

Govs Preach Love, Peace And Unity As Christians Celebrate Easter

Easter Sunday marks the resurrection of Jesus Christ and is the culmination of Holy Week,…

4 hours ago