La Liga News 

Koke and Carrasco return to boost Atletico Madrid

Atletico Madrid duo Koke and Yannick Carrasco have returned to training ahead of the Madrid derby against Real Madrid.

Spanish international Koke missed his side’s last six games after sustaining a thigh injury during the 1-1 draw with Barcelona last month, whilst Carrasco damaged his knee in the disappointing draw with Qarabag in the Champions League.

Madrid, who are now preparing over the international break to face city rivals Real – released a statement on Thursday morning, saying:

“Carrasco and Koke worked with the group. The winger and midfielder are into the final stretch of their recoveries.”

Defensive duo Stefan Savic and Filipe Luis are also on the road to recovery and have nine days to be fully fit for the Madrid derby.

Boss Diego Simeone has struggled without four of his regular starters, having drawn seven of his last nine games.

Atleti ended a run of three consecutive draws by beating Deportivo La Coruna 1-0 at the Riazor on Saturday afternoon.

Zakaria Bakkali has perhaps the best chance for the hosts, but Jan Oblak saved his effort to ensure both sides entered the dressing room on level terms.

The second half did liven up as Depor’s Sidnei was hauled down in the area but referee Alfonso Alvarez Izquierdo waved play on.

Antoine Griezmann did grow into the game and he came close just after the restart, causing home keeper Costel Pantilimon little trouble, however. The French international caused havoc later on as he skipped past two defenders, before finding Kevin Gameiro, but he failed to test the keeper.

As time was running out for Simeone’s side, four minutes were added and a mazy run from Lucas Hernandez forced a foul from Sidnei.

The resulting free kick was taken by Partey, who curled in a delightful effort to give his side a much needed win.

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