A quintet of vacationing Atlético Madrid players — Ángel Correa, Renan Lodi, Nehuén Pérez, Luis Suárez, and Kieran Trippier — returned to the team’s training complex in Majadahonda on Monday to prepare for the season ahead.
More immediately, Diego Simeone’s men are preparing for their penultimate friendly against Cádiz on Wednesday. But due to the rojiblancos’ jam-packed summer, Simeone and his staff — most notably fitness guru Óscar Ortega — may need more time, as well as patience, to ready the team for the coming season. They are already juggling varying fitness levels with 12 days to go until the league opener at Celta Vigo.
At the moment, Simeone is without three central defenders — Felipe (knee) and Stefan Savić (quadriceps) are ramping up their recoveries from injury but still aren’t available, while Mario Hermoso has just returned to Madrid after spending a couple nights in a Wolfsburg hospital with abdominal problems.
João Félix is progressing in his recovery from ankle surgery, but he will not play against Cádiz and it is still anticipated that he will miss the season’s opening game(s). And it’s unlikely we will see any extended minutes for Correa, Suárez, or Trippier against Cádiz or against Feyenoord in Rotterdam next week, meaning that trio could arrive at Balaídos without an established rhythm.
Meanwhile, Saúl is still taking training as rumors continue regarding his departure for the Premier League. According to Diario AS, he’s even set to play left back against Cádiz. Young defender Pérez could also be on the “exit ramp” after playing for Argentina at the Olympic Games and might be heading for a third consecutive loan spell, but Simeone is likely to get a good look at the 21-year-old if he names him a starter on Wednesday.
As far as non-injured players go, only Héctor Herrera remains absent for LaLiga’s defending champions, as the midfielder was playing in the Gold Cup with Mexico. He was named the tournament’s best player even though his country lost the final in extra time to the United States on Sunday.