Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that James Rodriguez will return from injury and start in tomorrow’s Liga match against Granada at the Bernabeu.
The Colombian suffered a foot injury after scoring in the 2-1 victory over Sevilla in February and has been a big miss for Madrid, who have won four, lost four and drawn one since his trip to the treatment room.
The former Monaco man has proved his fitness in training, however, and he will be thrown straight back into the action when struggling Granada make the trip to the Spanish capital on Sunday lunchtime.
“James will start and he’s in a good physical condition,” said Ancelotti in the pre-match press conference on Saturday. “He has trained well.”
Ancelotti’s decision was perhaps helped by Isco’s absence in tomorrow’s match through suspension. The former Malaga man picked up his fifth booking in the defeat at Barcelona last time out and he will sit out with a one-match ban.
Gareth Bale will also continue despite the criticism he received following his performance at the Camp Nou. Bale shone for Wales on international duty and his coach hopes that will rub-off on his club form. “I think Bale’s last couple of matches have been good and he kept his good form with Wales,” he said. “This FIFA break was good for some of our players to regain some confidence and good feelings.”
Madrid will have home advantage in four of their six Liga matches during a fixture-packed schedule in April and Ancelotti hopes to get the support, and not whistles, of the Madrid fans.
“The fans will help us if we play well, which is our main goal for this month because our match against Barcelona was good,” he said. “We cannot be thinking about where Barcelona will drop points, our goal is to win every match left, and I believe we can do this just like it happened before winter.”
Ancelotti confirmed he will also rest Dani Carvajal tomorrow, meaning Alvaro Arbeloa will likely step in at right-back.