Ancelotti Hints at Modric’s El Clasico Return

Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti insists midfielder Luka Modric will be fit in time for the second El Clasico of the Spanish La Liga season on 22 March.

The Croatian midfielder returned to training this week after spending three months on the sidelines due to a torn thigh muscle he picked while on international duty.

Subsequent injuries to James Rodriguez, who faces two months away from the pitch due to a broken bone in his right foot, and Sami Khedira, out with a hamstring injury, means options are limited in the middle of the park for the 55-year-old.

But in his press conference on Saturday, ahead of their next game against Elche, Ancelotti said Modric is on a steady road to full recovery.

Luka Modric Has Been Out Since November 16, 2014, With a Thorn Thigh Muscle. Image: Getty.
Luka Modric Has Been Out Since November 16, 2014, With a Thorn Thigh Muscle. Image: Getty.
“The idea is for him to play before the Barca game,” said the Italian boss. “For sure he’ll play before 22 March and will be ready for the Clasico.

“He’s feeling good and is very positive. On Thursday he began training with the rest of the squad. Next week will be his first full session. Hopefully we’ll be able to get him back playing in March.”

Sunday night’s game at Elche will be Ancelotti’s 100th in charge of the Los Blancos. The former Chelsea and Paris St-Germain manager has guided Real to winning four trophies, including a tenth European Cup, in that time. His position has however come under criticism in recent weeks, especially after their 4-0 humbling at Atletico Madrid earlier in the month.

And with his current deal set to run out in 2016, Ancelotti explained he was not in haste about contract renewal talks, which seemed to have pelted.

“I feel valued and happy here. There is no rush for the renewal of my contract, we have a year-and-a-half,” Ancelotti said.

“Since I arrived here I knew we need to win, but that isn’t something new, in all the teams I have coached the objective was to win titles. I don’t think I will renew only if we win. The end of the season will be a good time to talk about the renewal, but if not then there is no rush. I have a contract here until 2016.”

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