Zinedine Zidane is frustrated by Real Madrid’s injury problems and admitted it is not easy rotating his side between matches.
Defender Dani Carvajal suffered another injury setback this week, just three games into his comeback, and is now expected to miss the rest of the season, reports DPA.
Carvajal joins Lucas Vazquez, Ferland Mendy and Federico Valverde on the sidelines, but skipper Sergio Ramos is back in training and could feature against Osasuna on Saturday.
Madrid face another tight turnaround in fixtures, with the La Liga clash against Osasuna followed four days later by a Champions League semi-final second leg with Chelsea.
Zidane has suggested he will not rest any key players this weekend though, as draw specialists Madrid seek just a second win in six matches in all competitions.
“As a coach, of course I am very frustrated with the relapses,” Zidane said at a pre-match news conference on Friday.
“I can’t explain the number of setbacks. All teams have had problems. With the issues we’ve had, getting to this point and still being in contention means a lot.”
Madrid’s issues could be compounded for their trip to Chelsea next week as Marcelo has been called up to monitor a polling station during local elections a day before the match, which is poised at 1-1.
However, Zidane has indicated that the experienced defender will still be part of Los Blancos’ travelling party next week.
“It is what it is,” Zidane said. “He is going to fulfil his obligations, but nothing changes. He will still be with us on Wednesday.”
Madrid have drawn two of their last three league games, but their hopes of retaining the La Liga title were boosted on Thursday with Barcelona”s shock home loss to Granada.
Zidane’s side are level on points with Barca and are only two behind leaders Atletico Madrid, with fourth-placed Sevilla just a point further back.