MADRID - World Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo will miss Real Madrid's visit to Celta Vigo on Sunday due to an injury picked up in Wednesday's 1-1 draw with Valladolid.
The Portuguese forward, who has only recently returned from a hamstring injury, was withdrawn early on against Valladolid due to muscle fatigue in his left leg as Real's chances of claiming the title were almost certainly ended by a second consecutive draw which left them four points behind leaders Atletico Madrid with just two games remaining.
Real coach Carlo Ancelotti confirmed on Saturday that he would take no risks over Ronaldo's fitness with the Champions League final just two weeks away and that he would be joined on the sidelines by Raphael Varane, Angel di Maria, Pepe and Dani Carvajal.
"I prefer not to take risks," said Ancelotti.
"Tomorrow Cristiano will not play. If it had been a final then tomorrow he would try, but it is not a final. He will try to play against Espanyol next week. Varane, Pepe, Di Maria and Carvajal will also not be there.
"We need to try to do our best because mathematically anything can happen. We will put out a team we think we can win." In more positive injury news for Real, Ancelotti also confirmed that Alvaro Arbeloa and Sami Khedira will make their comebacks after long spells out through injury.
Khedira, who was included in Germany boss Joachim Loew's provisional list of 30 players for the World Cup this week, hasn't played since suffering cruciate ligament damage in November, whilst Arbeloa has been out for over two months.
"They are available and I will decide when they will play. It could be from the start or in the second half when there is less intensity in the game, but they will definitely play.
"Khedira is doing well and he has the assurance of the doctors. He is confident and desperate to play. He obviously can't play 90 minutes, but his physical and mental condition is very good just like Arbeloa.
"The two of them have worked very hard and shown incredible professionalism." And despite seeing their title hopes dashed in the past week, Ancelotti is determined to get to winning ways to boost confidence ahead of facing Atletico in the Champions League final in Lisbon.
"The team isn't happy with the last two results and we need to react.
"It won't create doubts for the final. We have lost important points and we have to try to win. Tomorrow the league could be over or it could open up again. There have been a lot of surprises and we need to be ready in case there are more."