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Madrid derby: Ancelotti gives latest fitness update on Benzema

Karim Benzema, Real Madrid
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The French midfielder picked up an injury in Real Madrid’s win over Celtic earlier this month.

Karim Benzema will miss Real Madrid’s upcoming derby against Atletico Madrid, according to Carlo Ancelotti.

The Frenchman is spending his recovery process from a knee injury that he picked up on September 3. 

Ancelotti had previously speculated the striker might return for the Madrid derby. However, he has confirmed Benzema‘s absence in his press conference ahead of the game.

The Italian boss said: “I’m not saying [who will play up front], Benzema won’t be there.

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“He has started working individually and will be ready after the [international] break.”

In Benzema’s absence, Vinicius Junior will be on the receiving end of most Real Madrid passes upfront. 

The controversy around Vinicius’ goal celebration has generated a wave of support for the 22-year-old. However, Ancelotti says he has avoided discussing the matter in the locker room.

“It’s something that we don’t touch on in the locker room,” Ancelotti added.

“These are issues that are not normally discussed in the locker room, we usually talk about football.

“Racism is one thing and what happens in football is another thing. We have not touched on this issue of racism because the player has responded very well.”