Eight Real Madrid players, including Luka Modric, have been ruled out of Wednesday’s Champions League clash against Napoli.
Carlo Ancelotti must cope without several regular starters for tomorrow’s Champions League meeting with his ex-club Napoli at the Estadio Bernabeu in Madrid.
The Merengues have released their squad list which does not include the injured Thibaut Courtois, Kepa, Eder Militao, Aurelien Tchouameni, Eduardo Camavinga, Luka Modric, Arda Guler and Vinicius Jr.
Modric was the latest forced out of action for the La Liga giants due to a muscle problem.
Real Madrid secured a 3-0 win over Cadiz on Sunday and are the current La Liga leaders with 35 points, just as many as Girona.
Ancelotti and Dani Carvajal held pre-match press conferences on the eve of the Napoli game on Tuesday but refused to complain about injuries saying that the incoming European fixture will be a good chance for those players who haven’t had regular playing time so far this season.
“I really would not want to speak about all these problems that we have and players who are unavailable, because it’s a lack of respect for all those players who will be playing, who are also great professionals and can contribute great things and achieve great results.
“Obviously we didn’t expect something like that to happen, but considering that we have achieved great results. Despite all of these disadvantages, I can tell you that this squad is amazing. We have great strength and depth.”
Goalkeeper Kepa (muscle) stuck to an individual training plan on Tuesday while Arda Guler, Militao, Thibaut Courtois, Aurelien Tchouameni, Eduardo Camavinga and Vinicius Junior continue to progress following their respective injuries.
And there may be more bad news for the hosts, with midfielder Brahim still recovering from the intestinal issue that kept him out of Sunday’s squad.
Ancelotti feels Napoli will continue to feed off the freshness of new head coach Walter Mazzarri, who took over from Rudi Garcia earlier this month and oversaw a 2-1 triumph at Atalanta on Saturday.
“I think the fact that they changed the manager will serve as an additional source of motivation for the players,” the Real Madrid boss said. “They already showed that against Atalanta who they beat this weekend.”
Ancelotti, who has recently been linked to Manchester United and the Brazil men’s national team, refused to entertain questions about whether he feels his employer will soon offer him the opportunity to extend his tenure past next summer when his contract is due to expire.
He said: “I stopped talking about my future quite a while ago and I’m not going to do it this time either.”