Sergio Ramos has suffered a fresh injury setback at Real Madrid and now faces a race against time to figure for the club again as his contract runs down.
Fitness issues have been endured by the World Cup-winning defender on a regular basis this season, with a hamstring complaint now keeping him on the sidelines.
The 35-year-old, who returned to action in a Champions League semi-final defeat at Chelsea, will be hoping that he is not out for long as he is due to hit free agency this summer.
Real have said in a statement released on the club’s official website: “Following the tests carried out on Sergio Ramos by the Real Madrid Medical Services, he has been diagnosed with tendenitis in the semimembranosus muscle of his left hamstring.
“His recovery will continue to be assessed.”
A long-serving member of the Blancos squad is approaching the end of his 16th season at Santiago Bernabeu and admits to being left frustrated at how the 2020-21 campaign has played out.
Ramos has posted on Instagram: “The truth is that I have been a pretty tough few weeks.
“Luckily, for a few days now I have been feeling better, but in football as in life, bad luck also plays a role.
“Yesterday, after the game [against Chelsea], I was training on the pitch and I noticed a puncture in my left calf. Today I have been tested and it has been confirmed that I have a muscle injury.
“If there is something that hurts me, it is not being able to help the team in these highly demanding matches in which we play and also not being able to return the love and energy that you transmit to me on the pitch.
“I can’t do anything but speak frankly, work hard and cheer on the team with my soul.”
Knee problems have been an all too familiar theme for Ramos in the current campaign, with surgery required at one stage.
A number of muscle complaints, and a bout of Covid-19, have also kept a talismanic presence out of Zinedine Zidane’s plans.
In total, Ramos has missed 32 games and appeared in only 21 across all competitions.
With Real now out of Europe following their defeat to Chelsea, there are just four fixtures remaining on their schedule – starting with a crunch clash at home to Sevilla on Sunday.