Rafael Benitez confirms Bale and Ramos available for Madrid derby

Gareth Bale and Sergio Ramos Real Madrid

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Real Madrid will have Gareth Bale and Sergio Ramos available for Sunday night’s Madrid derby against Atletico at the Vicente Calderon.

Ramos returned to training on Friday after a dislocated shoulder and was joined by Bale, who has missed the club’s last three games with a calf injury.

Real boss Rafael Benitez has confirmed both are under consideration and he says he will wait until the last minute before deciding whether or not to include them in his starting line-up.

“Both players have been back in training and have the medical all-clear,” Benitez said. “As for whether they play in the starting line-up, we will make that decision tomorrow.

“I’ve spoken with both players, and of course they are anxious to participate.”

Real Madrid have not beaten Diego Simeone’s side in five La Liga meetings but they go into the game two points clear of their hosts, who have lost their last two games to Villarreal and Benfica.

Benitez grew up in Madrid and was involved with Real as a player and coach earlier in his career but he admits he is relishing his first clash with Atletico since replacing Carlo Ancelotti as manager in the summer.

The former Liverpool manager said he is “well aware of what this game means to the city” and despite the recent struggles of Simeone’s team, he is expecting a tough battle.

“My opinion on Atleti hasn’t changed due to their recent results. This is a derby game. They are a team of great quality and it will be difficult.”

Real Madrid are 2.40 to win the Madrid derby. Atletico are 3.10 while the draw is available at 3.25.

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