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05th-Apr-2015

Rodriguez to make Real Madrid comeback

By AFP, Madrid

Colombian World Cup star James Rodriguez will start for Real Madrid against Granada on Sunday after a two month layoff with a foot injury, Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed.
Rodriguez fractured the fifth metatarsal in his right foot during a 2-1 win over Sevilla at the start of February and his absence has coincided with Real's decline in recent weeks as they surrendered a four-point lead over Barcelona at the top of La Liga to now trail the Catalans by four points.
"He will start the game," Ancelotti said at his pre-match press conference on Saturday.
"He is fine. Tomorrow I will give a rest to (Sami) Khedira and (Dani) Carvajal, Isco is suspended for one game and the rest are available."
The visit of Granada to the Santiago Bernabeu kicks off a busy month for the European champions with seven La Liga games in 27 days, as well as a Champions League quarter-final against city rivals Atletico Madrid.
However, Ancelotti believes his squad is fresher than at this time last season and can still overcome Barcelona in the title race.
"We are convinced that the league is still wide open, but we cannot slip up. We need to try to win all the remaining games.
"It is true that in January and February we dipped, but the team is fresh and desperate to win. We come into this period in better shape than last year."
Isco's suspension means that Rodriguez's return doesn't threaten Gareth Bale's place in the side at least for this weekend. However, much more will be expected of the Welshman in the final stretch of the campaign than he has delivered so far in 2015.