Real Madrid have reportedly been handed a major injury boost ahead of their Champions League last 16 tie against Liverpool.
The two sides will face off across two legs in a repeat of last season’s final, which Real won 1-0 at the Stade de France in Paris.
Whilst Jurgen Klopp’s Reds have struggled in the Premier League this season, however, Real remain contenders for the La Liga title.
But two losses and a draw in their last five games means they are now eight points behind leaders Barcelona, who have recorded 53 points from their 20 games thus far.
And Los Blancos have had to contend with a number of injuries, with Karim Benzema, Eden Hazard, Ferland Mendy, Lucas Vazquez and Eder Militao all sidelined for Saturday’s surprise 1-0 defeat to Mallorca.
In addition, Thibaut Courtois suffered an injury in the warmup after being selected to start the match, and was unable to participate.
However, the Spanish giants have received a timely boost ahead of the first leg of their Liverpool clash at Anfield.
Real Madrid handed pre-Liverpool injury boost
Real have included the injured trio of Courtois, Hazard and Benzema in their squad for the Club World Cup, which takes place later this week.
Ancelotti has told reporters that he hopes all three players will return to action for the final on Saturday, should Real make it to that stage. They face Egyptian side Al Ahly, who were runners-up in last season’s CAF Champions League, in the semi-final.
He said (quotes via Football Espana): “They are on the list because we believe they can recover by Saturday, but they have stayed in Madrid so that they can be treated well there.
“If we reach the final and they are fine, they can come on Thursday.”
If all three recover in time, it is likely that the trio will be available to take on Liverpool, with the return of reigning Ballon d’Or holder Benzema a significant obstacle for the Reds to overcome despite the France international’s injury troubles this term.