Rafa Benitez has rubbished talk of an injury crisis at Real Madrid ahead of Sunday’s friendly against Valerenga. “We have two injuries, not six.”
The likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Fabio Coentrao and Sergio Ramos were understood to have been carrying injuries, along with confirmed absentees Pepe and Karim Benzema, but the Coach insists his squad will be in fighting shape for the start of the season.
“Cristiano has a problem in his lower back and has been working with the physios,” he said at a Press conference.
“He’ll be back next week, so he’ll be available against Sporting in our first League match.
“I’m sorry [to the fans in Oslo] because we know that the fans wanted to see him and we wish he was here.
“The numbers [on our injuries] that have been published are incorrect. We have two injuries to Pepe and Karim [Benzema].
“The others are just knocks. After the tour, we suffered two injuries and I think the team are in good shape.
“We have two injuries, not six. So far, we’ve only played friendlies and decided to rest some players.
“I’m very optimistic [about our balance]. I see the team in very good shape.
“It’s been a positive pre-season on almost every level. We’ve played against some very strong teams.
“Tottenham, for example, started their Premier League campaign [on Saturday].
“Now, we have the match in Norway and then the Trofeo Bernabeu to ensure we continue working and adjusting things.
“There have been games where we scored goals without conceding and those in which we haven’t scored but haven’t conceded.
“I am very optimistic because there’s still room for improvement.”