Ronaldo's injury absence played down
Diego Lopez says Cristiano Ronaldo will be missed as he recovers from some minor injury issues, but Real Madrid have the squad strength to cover.
Ronaldo limped out of Saturday’s 5-0 La Liga win at Almeria and tests revealed a thigh problem which will keep him out of Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Galatasaray at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
Reports in Spain suggest Madrid may now take advantage of a low key upcoming schedule so that the 2013 Ballon d’Or favourite, who has missed some training sessions recently due to knocks accumulated through a busy month with club and country, does not return to action until Madrid’s Primera Division trip to Osasuna on Dec. 14.
The Galician goalkeeper said it was true that Madrid often relied on Ronaldo -- who has a phenomenal 32 goals in 22 games so far in 2013-14 -- but pointed out that his teammates had reacted well without him at the Estadio Juegos Mediterraneos last weekend.
“You cannot deny that [Ronaldo] is the most decisive player,” Lopez said. “He is a key piece, but on Saturday against Almeria he came off the pitch [at 1-0], and we went on to hammer them [5-0]. There are many other capable players in this team, although we will miss him.”
Young attacker Jese Rodriguez, 20, replaced Ronaldo at Almeria and impressed when providing two clever assists during his half hour on the pitch. Angel Di Maria, who missed last weekend’s game having picked up a knock on international duty, is another option to come back into the team against Galatasaray.