James Rodriguez’s place in the Real Madrid side for their upcoming match against Real Mallorca depends on whether he can meet a certain requirement made by Zinedine Zidane, according to a report by Marca.
The Colombian remained in the Spanish capital over the international break, however he has been unable to train with his team-mates because of fears that he may worsen the current fibula issue he has.
Instead, the attacking midfielder has been limited to gym work, but if he isn’t ready to join up with the first-team on Monday, then his place for the match against Mallorca will be in doubt as Zidane has publicly revealed he will not risk anyone who is not fully fit.
By no means a mainstay in the Real Madrid set-up, Rodriguez has become an integral member of Zizou’s first-team as he has featured in all-but-two of their matches so far this season (per TransferMarkt), having contributed to the cause with one goal and one assist in his seven appearances across all competitions.
Indeed, the 28-year-old has looked to make the most of his second opportunity at the Santiago Bernabeu count for something, having spent two years on loan at Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich, as he has put in some respectable averages when given playing time.
According to data compiled by WhoScored, he has achieved a total of 1.3 shots per match in La Liga, with 1.5 key passes as well in the 251 minutes he has had on the pitch.
To add some context to those statistics, that appears to be more than what some of the other players have managed to provide, despite having fewer minutes on the pitch.
However, with Zidane keen not to risk playing anyone who is not considered to be fully fit (Marca), Rodriguez could be facing a tough battle to convince his manager that he is deserving of a starting berth for their upcoming fixture with Mallorca.
Indeed, it would have been a positive that he did not play for Colombia in the recent international break and did not have to do any additional travelling over the period, however he may still be at a disadvantage as he has not been able to train properly.
Monday’s examination certainly appears to be a crucial moment for Rodriguez and one that he will hope he can get through without any issues.
Real Madrid fans, should Rodriguez play against Mallorca? Let us know your thoughts by sharing them in the comments section below!Like what the TT have on offer? Sign up for more notifications!