James Rodriguez is ready to play for Real Madrid – Zinedine Zidane

Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane says James Rodriguez will get his chance to play after an ankle problem ruled Gareth Bale out of action until the New Year.


Bale will undergo surgery on his ankle next Tuesday, with Colombia international James ready to step in after struggling for regular playing time this season.

“The door is always open to everyone and now James is ready to play,” Zidane told a news conference. “I don’t think it is true that he never plays and I don’t agree that he hasn’t had chances.

“I do think he should stay at this great club. Sometimes it takes time but it isn’t a matter of [his] attitude, I simply have to make decisions.

“He will play and is going to receive minutes. He is a very good player and we all know what he can bring. He wants to play more and that’s understandable, but for me, he is a major player.”

Ahead of Saturday’s game with Sporting Gijon, Bale was joined on the sidelines by defender Raphael Varane and Fabio Coentrao. Toni Kroos and Alvaro Morata are already out and the French coach admitted that sometimes injuries can just derail you.

“It is complicated,” Zidane said. “The people who work here do everything possible but sometimes, there are things that you can do nothing about.

“Of course you are upset when you lose a player like Bale but all that we can do is to continue going on our way.”


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