Madrid: Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti will rest his Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo for Saturday's La Liga clash against Real Sociedad, the Italian confirmed on Friday.
The double Ballon d'Or winner has been struggling with a knee injury and fatigue in recent weeks, although that didn't stop the 29-year-old equalling the Champions League record for goals in one season last Wednesday.
The former Manchester United striker picked up his 14th goal in this season's competition during the 3-0 quarter-final first-leg win over Borussia Dortmund in midweek.
"Tomorrow (Saturday), we will rest Cristiano," explained Ancelotti. "He's a bit tired and we don't want to take a risk. We prefer to leave him at home and have him work on his training so he's ready for Tuesday night," added the Italian in reference to the second leg against Dortmund. "We have spoken to him and decided together that it was for the best that he rested. Tuesday, he will be fresher and can better recuperate after a string of matches."
There was further concern at the capital club on Friday when injured striker Jese was forced to return to Augsburg, Germany following inflammation in the wake of recent surgery on ruptured cruciate ligaments in his right knee. The 21-year-old is already out for the rest of the season after breaking down during the 3-1 Champions League victory over Schalke 04 last month.
"These past days, Jese has had a fever and inflammation of the knee. He needs to be examined by the surgeon and will go to Germany for tests. I hope it is nothing serious," said Ancelotti.
Real come into the weekend in third spot in La Liga, three points behind leaders Atletico Madrid and two adrift of second-placed Barcelona.