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Real Madrid handed a huge injury blow ahead of season opener

Courtois at Real Madrid
© Ace Football

Just days before the start of their 2023/24 LaLiga campaign, Real Madrid have suffered an untimely injury setback.

Real Madrid’s star goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has suffered a potential season-ending injury blow.

During a Thursday training session, Courtois ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his left knee. It’s a gut-wrenching setback for both the club and the player. It could sideline him for the entire season.

In a statement, Real Madrid confirmed Courtois will undergo surgery for an ACL injury “in the coming days”. The club did not give a possible return date for the goalkeeper.

Until Courtois has had his ACL operation, it’s unlikely Real Madrid will give any update on how long the 31-year-old will be out of action.

Regardless, this setback hands Real Madrid a major problem. They’re two days away from facing Athletic Bilbao in their season opener in LaLiga. Andriy Lunin, a 24-year-old Ukrainian goalkeeper, is their sole senior option to guard the net in Courtois’ place.

Lunin, who joined Real Madrid in 2018 for €8.5 million from Zorya Lugansk, has only made 17 first-team appearances. He has gone out on loan three times with Spanish clubs Leganes, Real Valladolid, and Real Oviedo.

Last season, Lunin stayed in Madrid as a backup for Courtois. He played in 12 games across all competitions, conceded 13 goals and kept four clean sheets.