REAL MADRID have two key players ruled out of their Champions League tie against Liverpool.
Doubts mounted on the availability of Karim Benzema after he was forced off with a muscular injury in Madrid’s 4-0 win over Elche last week.
Midfielder Toni Kroos, 33, also picked up an illness and the pair both missed Saturday’s 2-0 victory over Osasuna.
Now boss Carlo Ancelotti’s side have confirmed that they will be missing two crucial players for Tuesday’s trip to Anfield.
However, talisman striker Benzema is fit enough to be included in the squad for the first leg of the last-16 Champions League showdown.
But Kroos and Aurelien Tchouameni, who make up two of Ancelotti’s preferred midfield trio, have both not been named in the squad.
According to Relevo, German international Kroos suffered an intestinal infection which badly affected his weight and muscle mass.
Meanwhile, French ace Tchouameni, 23, is still feeling the effects of flu.
This will be news to ears of Jurgen Klopp as his team enter the contest with renewed optimism after successive victories and clean sheets against Everton and Newcastle.
Liverpool appear to have turned a corner with Virgil van Dijk back at the heart of the defence, and attacker Cody Gakpo finding his feet.
The pair renew hostilities after their 2021-22 Champions League final, which saw the Spanish side win 1-0 courtesy of Vinicius Junior.
In fact, Ancelotti’s side have the edge over their rivals having won five of the last six meetings since 2014.