Alonso ruled out of Juventus clash

The Spain international returned to full training earlier this week but will not be risked against the Bianconeri with a Clasico to come on Saturday

Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that Xabi Alonso will not feature in Wednesday night’s Champions League showdown with Juventus.

The influential midfielder has not managed a single minute of first-team football this season after suffering a foot injury just as he was about to make his return from a groin problem.

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Alonso did return to full training on Monday but Ancelotti has decided against risking the Spain international against Juventus, given los Blancos face Barcelona in la Liga on Saturday evening.

“We have all of our players available except for Xabi Alonso – but I am not going to give you my team for tomorrow [Wednesday],” the Italian told reporters on the eve of the Group B match.

Ancelotti did admit, though, that he will resist the temptation to push Cristiano Ronaldo into a more central attacking position in spite of Karim Benzema’s poor form in front of goal so far this season.

“Ronaldo starts on the wing but he will push on and try to score from a forward position – it’s very hard to score from the wing,” the former AC Milan boss mused.

“We are not so crazy as to change the position of a player who scores 40 or 50 goals from a particular area of the pitch.”

Ancelotti refused to confirm if Gareth Bale will start, admitting that Angel Di Maria could well get the nod on the right wing.

“Di Maria is playing well,” he enthused. “He is full of confidence. He has a lot of character. I hope he continues that way as he is very important for us, as he can play in many positions.”

Juventus are sweating on the fitness of Arturo Vidal and Ancelotti admits that the Chile international would be a big loss for the Bianconeri despite their strength in depth.

“Juventus in general have many players with a lot of quality,” he pointed out. “Arturo Vidal is very important: he can score and move about the pitch well.

“He has shown his quality. But, individuals aside, their overall strength lies in their organisation.”

Ancelotti, of course, spent two years in charge of Juve between 1999 and 2001 and when asked what has changed since his spell in Turin, the 54-year-old joked: “My hair!

“No, many things have changed. I have more experience now. My experience at Juventus was very important in terms of my growth as a coach and a person.

“The results maybe were not great but my experiences and memories from that time are good ones.”

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