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Triple injury scare for Real Madrid


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Madrid, May 8 (IANS) Real Madrid's 1-1 draw away to Valladolid Wednesday night looks as if it could have cost them more than any chance of winning the league title, as the club came away from the Nuevo Zorilla Stadium with three worrying injuries to key players.

Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe and Angel Di Maria all suffered potentially serious injuries, reports Xinhua.

Ronaldo lasted just eight minutes of the game before having to leave the pitch with a problem in the hamstring which sidelined him for two weeks last month.

Reports are that the striker was suffering from "muscle fatigue," which providing this is indeed the case, will probably see him rested this weekend. However, the feeling is the club has been less than clear in the past about his injuries and this has been a problem which has now dragged on for over a month.

Both Pepe and Dei Maria's injuries could be more serious: Pepe suffered a calf injury and will need tests to discover the full extent of the damage. If the test show he has torn a muscle, then he will be out of action for at least a fortnight and it will be touch and go to see whether he is fit for the final.

That is a major worry for Real Madrid given that Pepe has had an excellent season and his obvious replacement, Rafael Varene was forced to sit out Wednesday's game with an inflammation of his troublesome right knee.

Di Maria's injury looks to be even more serious. The Argentinean international looks to have suffered a serious groin injury, which will almost certainly see him miss the end of the season and could put his place at the World Cup in jeopardy.

The news is even more worrying for the club bearing in mind that Wednesday UEFA threw out Xabi Alonso's appeal against the yellow card which sees him suspended for the Cup final. And they now face the prospect of taking on Atletico Madrid with several key players in the stands rather than on the pitch.

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