As if Real Madrid's luck isn't bad enough these days, word out of the Berbabeu today doesn't help things.
Mali midfielder Mahamadou Diarra will be sidelined for six to nine months after undergoing knee surgery, the club announced today.
Not good news ahead of this weekend's clash with arch-rivals FC Barcelona, who just whopped my favorite club's behind 4-0.
Diarra sustained the injury to his right knee while playing for Mali against Chad in October.
He was initially out of action for two weeks before returning for Real.
A month later, however, he aggravated the injury in a league game and an X-ray last week confirmed he would need arthroscopic surgery.
Diarra will be missed by the Spanish champions and also by Mali, as he will be absent for the opening matches of their final round of qualifiers for the 2010 World Cup and African Cup of Nations, which begin in March.
MY POV: Having Diarra on the squad probably wouldn't help Madrid all that much against the FC Barca juggernaut, who look unstoppable at this point in the season. Still, major blow for the Spanish capital's team and for Mali, who will miss the midfielder greatly ...