Madrid captain Sergio Ramos

Sergio Ramos has been left out of Real Madrid’s squad to face Shakhtar Donetsk on Wednesday night in the Champions League.

This is due to a knee injury he picked in the 1-0 LaLiga Santander defeat against Cadiz on Saturday.

Los Blancos’ captain was eager to play against the Ukrainians in order to help the team get back to winning ways but he was unable to train on Tuesday and it was decided that he would be better of focusing on getting fit for Sunday’s Clasico against Barcelona.

“We are not going to risk anyone,” said Zidane in his pre-match press conference, already hinting that Ramos would unlikely not be able to face Shakhtar.

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Ramos is a key figure for Madrid, particularly in the Champions League where his absence is often followed by a painful defeat, as was the case during the last 16 defeat to Manchester City in August, that time due to suspension, which eliminated them from the competition.

As a result, Madrid go into their Champions League opener with the absences of Ramos, Dani Carvajal, Eden Hazard, Martin Odegaard and Alvaro Odriozola, all through injury. This leaves Madrid with only five defenders available. Mariano Diaz, despite training with the group on Tuesday, is not yet among those selected by Zidane.

Real Madrid’s squad to face Shakhtar DonetskGoalkeepers: Thibaut Courtois, Andriy Lunin, Diego Altube.

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Defenders: Nacho Rodriguez, Eder Militao, Raphael Varane, Marcelo, Ferland Mendy.

Midfielders: Casemiro, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Isco, Fede Valverde.

Forwards: Karim Benzema, Luka Jovic, Marco Asensio, Vinicius Jr, Rodrygo Goes, Lucas Vazquez.