Lack of strikers for Real this weekend
25 April 2014, 17:05
Barcelona - Real Madrid face attacking concerns with Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema struggling to be fit to face Osasuna on Saturday but Cristiano Ronaldo is ready to start as they continue their pursuit of Atletico Madrid at the top of La Liga.
Carlo Ancelotti's players may be starting to show signs of wear but they are still looking strong on the pitch where they followed up their King's Cup victory over Barcelona with a 1-0 win in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final against Bayern Munich on Wednesday.
They have won their last three league matches, scoring 13 goals in the process, but the Osasuna game will test how much the gruelling clash with Bayern took out of the players.
Real did have a break last weekend to recover from their cup commitments and they trail Atletico by six points with a game in hand.
"Ronaldo is fine and needs to play to be in top condition," Ancelotti told a news conference on Friday.
The Portuguese forward started against Bayern having not played since early April with knee and hamstring problems, and was replaced in the second half by Bale who has had a heavy cold.
"There are doubts about Karim (Benzema) who has had a knock on his knee and we will change the team a bit but not a lot as the Osasuna match is very important for the league.
"Bale trained today but he is still a bit weak and a decision will be taken tomorrow over whether he plays or is reserved for next Tuesday (for the Champions League second leg).
"We are trying to recover in time for the game and give it 100 percent concentration because we are in the fight for the league. We hope to win all the games left but it is not easy because we put a lot of effort into the Bayern match.
"I am not thinking at the moment about the team to face Bayern as I am focused on Osasuna. It is possible that as Benzema has problems that Morata could start and he has done well in the opportunities that he has had so far."
Ancelotti was asked about speculation linking him with the Manchester United managerial job following the sacking of David Moyes.
"I am very happy here," he said. "I am lucky enough to coach the best team in the world. I respect Manchester United and I am sorry for what happened with Moyes but I am staying here."