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Luka Jovic absent from Real Madrid's Clasico squad with future in doubt

Real Madrid striker Luka Jovic
Modified 29 Feb 2020, 22:06 IST

Luka Jovic is a high-profile exclusion from the Real Madrid squad for Sunday's El Clasico against Barcelona, with Mariano Diaz potentially set for a first LaLiga appearance of the season.

Jovic, 22, was signed from Eintracht Frankfurt for a reported €60million at the start of the campaign, but he has had little impact with Los Blancos, making only 15 LaLiga appearances and scoring twice.

His last league outing was 20 days ago, scoring in a two-minute cameo in the 4-1 win over Osasuna, and although he was a late substitute against Manchester City in the Champions League on Wednesday, Jovic is not a part of the latest squad despite training on Saturday.

Jovic's exclusion comes just a few hours after Madrid-based publication Marca reported the club have decided to invest in a new striker at the end of the season, with Erling Haaland, Lautaro Martinez, Timo Werner and Kylian Mbappe mentioned as potential targets.

Mariano could take advantage of seemingly moving up in the pecking order, with the 26-year-old yet to make an appearance in LaLiga this term.

The former Lyon attacker's season has been interrupted by niggling injuries, however for much of the first half of the campaign he simply was not picked, Zinedine Zidane naming him on the bench just once.

Rodrygo is absent due to suspension, as he was sent off for Real Madrid Castilla last weekend.

Madrid, who have not won either of their past two league games, go into the match two points behind leaders Barca.

Published 29 Feb 2020, 22:06 IST
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