The Austrian defender is now set for a spell in quarantine after being diagnosed with the virus during the club’s latest round of medical checks
Real Madrid summer signing David Alaba has emerged as a doubt for the club’s upcoming friendly clash with AC Milan after testing positive for Covid-19.
Alaba completed a free transfer to Santiago Bernabeu after leaving Bayern Munich at the end of the 2020-21 campaign, and linked up with his new team-mates in the Spanish capital last week for the start of pre-season training.
The Austria international was in line to make his debut for Real against Milan on August 8, but his first appearance could now be delayed after being diagnosed with coronavirus.
What’s been said?
The Spanish giants have confirmed the news in an official statement on their website, which reads: “Real Madrid CF communicates that our player David Alaba has tested positive for Covid-19.”
How many other games could Alaba miss?
Alaba will now spend the next 10 days in quarantine in accordance with Covid-19 regulations in Spain, and will have to post a negative test on the day of the Milan fixture in order to be eligible for selection.
If the 29-year-old does not play, head coach Carlo Ancelotti may start sweating on his fitness ahead of the new La Liga season, with the Blancos set to begin their schedule with a trip to Alaves on August 14.
The bigger picture
Alaba is expected to make a big impact at Real in 2020-21 after 13 trophy-laden seasons at Bayern, where he established himself as one of the top defenders of his generation.
Supporters will hope that his recovery goes smoothly, or else Ancelotti could be facing a real selection problem at the back, with former club captain Sergio Ramos having moved onto pastures new at Paris Saint-Germain and his old centre-back partner Raphael Varane on the verge of joining Manchester United.
The Blancos may have to turn to academy options if Alaba is absent at the start of the season, with Eder Militao, Nacho and Jesus Vallejo the only other natural options in the heart of the defence currently available in the senior squad.