Karim Benzema will be available to face Liverpool and I will not discuss Kylian Mbappe’s future — Carlo Ancelotti
Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that Karim Benzema will be fit to face Liverpool in the Champions League next Wednesday.
The 35-year-old forward suffered an ankle injury and has been ruled out of Real Madrid’s game against Espanyol on Saturday.
However, the Italian manager has revealed that the Frenchman will return to the squad ahead of the second leg of the round-of-16-tie at the Santiago Bernabeu next week.
He said: “He’s had a knock on his ankle, he’s swollen that ankle, he’s been trying to recover but he’s started training individually today.
“Rodrygo will play tomorrow, yes, as a centre-forward.
“He (Benzema) will be available for Wednesday’s game.”
As he enters the twilight of his career, Benzema has begun to pick up more injuries.
He has missed nine La Liga games so far this season, but Ancelotti has downplayed the recurring injuries and still believes the striker is an important member of his squad despite admittedly having doubts about his future at the club with his current deal set to expire this summer.
Ancelotti however refused to discuss the future of Kylian Mbappe who has been a long-term target of the club.
Mbappe and Real have kept open more discrete channels of communication with the player and his entourage and, since the 2022 World Cup, there has been movement.
He said: “It’s inevitable that it will affect the team because of how important he (Benzema) is, especially with the season he had last season.
“In the first half of this one he did well and in the second half he did his thing, he scored goals, and we think he’s going to be important until the end of the season.
“He’s done well in some games, like in the last 16, scoring two goals. What will happen tomorrow is something that can happen to a footballer.
“As I said, for me he’s a player for life, but I don’t know what’s going to happen next year.”
Real will also be without David Alaba and Ferland Mendy for the game on Saturday but will welcome back Mariano to the squad.
Examining Karim Benzema’s slump. Is it as bad as it seems?
(Photo: Getty Images)