Real Madrid Will Not Rest Ronaldo For Clasico
Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti will not rest Cristiano Ronaldo against Champions League opponents Schalke, ahead of this weekend's El Clasico.
The Italian confirmed Ronaldo, 29, will start Tuesday's last-16 second leg at the Bernabeu, despite Real boasting a 6-1 lead against the Germans.
Spanish leaders Real host arch-rivals Barcelona, who are third, on Sunday.
"Playing well against Schalke is the best way to prepare for the Clasico," said Ancelotti.
"We are excited and keen to play well because it is a Champions League match and we must maintain the team's good form.
" Real, who are four points clear of Barca in La Liga with Atletico Madrid three behind in second, are aiming for their 31st match unbeaten in all competitions when they meet Schalke.
But Ancelotti will be without France striker Karim Benzema, who was substituted with a thigh injury in Saturday's narrow 1-0 win against Malaga.
"He can't play tomorrow, but he is recovering and we are confident that he will be back for Sunday," said Ancelotti.
Schalke manager Jens Keller says the Bundesliga side have no chance of progressing to the quarter-finals, but has urged his players to restore some pride in the Spanish capital.
"We are already eliminated by a bad result in the first leg, but it is a great experience for the players to play at the Bernabeu," he said.
"We have a young team and this match can be a great learning experience for them.