Turin (Italy), May 4 (IANS) Spanish football giants Real Madrid’s French forward Karim Benzema has been sidelined from his team’s Champions League semi-final first leg match against Italian champions Juventus.
Benzema has recently recovered from a knee ligament injury but is yet to attain full match fitness to play in such a crucial clash, reports Efe.
Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti preferred to rest Benzema so he would be ready for the La Liga clash against Valencia.
The French forward resumed training with his teammates on Sunday but Ancelotti believes it will be hasty to play the forward in Turin, so Benzema will stay back in Madrid to work out separately and get into optimal shape.
Real Madrid travel to Turin on Monday and play against Juventus on Tuesday.
The match against Juventus will be the fifth encounter Benzema will have missed since his injury at the Vicente Calderon Stadium in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals against Atletico Madrid.
Ancelotti also left out injured Croatian Luka Modric and German midfielder Sami Khedira from the team squad for the tie.