Key duo remain doubtful for Champions League final

Powered by [football] direct news “Key duo remain doubtful for Champions League final” was originally written on Tuesday, 20th May 2014 13:35 BST for [football] direct news by Andreas Vou

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Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti has admitted that key duo Pepe and Karim Benzema remain doubtful to recover in time for Saturday’s Champions League final against Atletico Madrid.

Despite a recent goal drought, Benzema has had a good campaign, scoring 17 times in 34 league matches while also getting on the scoresheet 5 times in 10 Champions League games.

Pepe, meanwhile, has been a rock at the heart of Ancelotti’s defence and proved vital in the two semi-finals against Bayern Munich in particular.

“They are the only two players that we have doubts about. I am not an optimist or a pessimist. At the moment they would not be able to play. We will make the decision at the end.”

Ancelotti has not yet revealed who would be in line to replace Benzema up front but confirmed that young Raphael Varane is set to replace Pepe should the Portuguese defender not make recover in time.

They are the only doubts that we have for this game. If Pepe does not make it, (Raphael) Varane can play in his position,” Ancelotti said at a UEFA press conference.

Madrid have been boosted by Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to training as the Portuguese superstar looks set to be 100 per cent fit in time for Saturday.

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Madrid have been boosted by Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to training as the Portuguese superstar looks set to be 100 per cent fit in time for Saturday.

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