Tuesday 25 April 2017

Bale a major doubt for Real as Messi hits 400th goal

Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo (left) tends to an injured Gareth Bale at the Santiago Bernabeu
Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo (left) tends to an injured Gareth Bale at the Santiago Bernabeu

Jamie Holland

Gareth Bale hobbled off just five minutes into Real Madrid's 3-1 victory over Malaga on Saturday and is now a major doubt for Wednesday's second leg of the Champions League quarter-final against Atletico Madrid.

Bale went down holding his left calf after an innocuous-looking challenge early in the game but immediately signalled that he needed to be replaced.

Luka Modric then had to be withdrawn on the hour mark after suffering a heavy blow to his knee in a challenge with Malaga's Recio to create more headaches for the European champions.

"Right now we can't say anything. We will evaluate them in the coming days," said Real manager Carlo Ancelotti.

Lionel Messi hit his 400th goal for La Liga leaders Barcelona deep to seal a 2-0 win over Valencia on Saturday.

Uruguay striker Luis Suarez continued his lethal form with a clinical low strike inside the area after being set up by Messi with less than a minute on the clock.

Suarez's goal followed his midweek double that clinched a 3-1 victory in the Champions League quarter-final first leg at Paris St Germain.

Meanwhile, Inter Milan and AC Milan remain mired in mid-table obscurity after last night's derby match ended goalless.

However, Milan defender Philippe Mexes breathed a deep sigh of relief after his second-half own goal was chalked off due to a controversial foul from Inter striker Rodrigo Palacio.

On Saturday, Juventus defeated second-placed Lazio 2-0 at home to take another huge step towards their fourth straight Serie A title.

In Germany, injury-ravaged Bayern Munich beat Hoffenheim 2-0 on Saturday.

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