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Bale rejoins Real Madrid group as Cristiano steps up training

AS AS 21/05/2014 EFE

Gareth Bale was Wednesday’s addition to the Real Madrid group as Carlo Ancelotti’s men continued their preparations for the Champions League final.

With three days to go until the clash against Atlético Madrid, the Welshman trained at the same pace as his team-mates, while Cristiano Ronaldo stepped up the intensity of his workout. However, Pepe is all but out of the final in Lisbon, and Frenchman Karim Benzema was again absent from the pitches at Valdebebas, the club’s training complex.

Cristiano Ronaldo in training at Valdebebas. © ESUS RUBIO (DIARIO AS) Cristiano Ronaldo in training at Valdebebas.

Bale, who missed Madrid’s first two training session of the week, has overcome the physical complaints that had led him to train in the gym and, as club sources confirmed to EFE, took part in the group session. Cristiano, meanwhile, continues to increase his workload as part of the recovery plan he is completing due to his recent muscular problems. The 29-year-old has confirmed his presence against Atlético, with Ancelotti corroborating his player’s words.

The Madrid boss put his squad through a session that combined physical exercises with tactical work. If, as all the indications suggest, Pepe does not return in time to face Diego Simeone’s men, he will be replaced in the line-up by Raphael Varane, who trained at a good pace with the rest of the squad. There is slightly more optimism over Benzema’s recovery chances, with Ancelotti’s firmest alternative option the inclusion of Isco.

At 11:00 CET on Thursday, Real Madrid will complete a final, closed-doors session before travelling to Lisbon in the afternoon.

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