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Pepe likely to miss Real Madrid’s derby against Atletico

Real Madrid play Atletico Madrid this weekend in the Madrid derby but a number of injuries appear to punctuate manager Bernd Schuster’s peace of mind. The key injury would well be at the back, precisely to Pepe whose first season at the Bernabeu has been injury-plagued.

Goal.com has reported that Pepe was absent for training on Thursday as Real prepared for the Madrid derby. Pepe played in midweek’s Copa Del Rey match against Real Mallorca and although he has not been entirely ruled out of the match, in all likelihood Schuster might have to make his gameplan without him.

Defenders Christoph Metzelder and Gabriel Heinze are already out with injury and Schuster might have to play a makeshift defence against Atletico who are chasing a UEFA Champions league spot this season. Pepe has not played consistently so far this season for Real Madrid after being imported from FC Porto in the summer but whenever he has played, he has been a rock at the heart of defence, that man-of-the-match performance against FC Barcelona in el clasico last month attests his significance to the Real Madrid jigsaw.

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