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Ancelotti confirms Militao return after injury

Ancelotti confirms Militao return after injury

After recovering from an injury, Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti declared on Saturday that defender Eder Militao is fit and will play against Athletic Bilbao.

The Brazilian center-back has been sidelined for more than seven months following a long-term cruciate ligament injury sustained in the season’s opening game against Athletic.

When the league leaders take on Ernesto Valverde’s explosive team on Sunday at the Santiago Bernabeu, Militao is probably going to be on the bench.

“The most important news is that Militao is returning tomorrow,” Ancelotti stated at a press conference.

“It’s clear that he’s not fully recovered from his injury because he hasn’t played football, but he’s available and well-trained.

“It’s excellent news for us that he is back for the return after getting hurt in the first game against Athletic.”

Barring any setbacks, Ancelotti will have the 26-year-old Militao available when Manchester City visits on April 9 for the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinal.

Madrid has survived the past few months with just two healthy center-backs on the field: Nacho Fernandez and Antonio Rudiger. Defender David Alaba is also out.

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

“I think we handled it well; even though Nacho has made mistakes, he has contributed a lot to the defense, and Rudiger is having a great season.”

Madrid has the best defense in Spain despite their problems with defensive injuries; in 29 games, they have given up just 20 goals, six fewer than their opponents Athletic, who have the second-best record.


Aurelien Tchouameni, a defensive midfielder, has occasionally stepped in at the back to help close the gap.

“Our team has allowed the fewest goals, which is a testament to our excellent collective work,” Ancelotti continued.

Star forward Vinicius Junior is out of the lineup for Madrid due to suspension, but leading scorer Jude Bellingham is back after a suspension.

The Brazilian winger has been the talk of the town this week following his moving media appearance on Monday in support of the fight against racism ahead of a friendly against Spain.

Various individuals, such as former Paraguay goalkeeper Jose Luis Chilavert, have seized the chance to further criticize the forward’s actions both on and off the field.

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

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