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Bale, Benzema injuries deepen Real Madrid’s struggles

Deportivo Alaves v Real Madrid CF - La Liga

VITORIA-GASTEIZ, SPAIN - OCTOBER 06: Karim Benzema of Real Madrid CF reacts during the La Liga match between Deportivo Alaves and Real Madrid CF at Estadio de Mendizorroza on October 6, 2018 in Vitoria-Gasteiz, Spain. (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)

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MADRID (AP) Real Madrid’s injuries keep mounting after Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema had to be substituted on Saturday in the 1-0 loss at Alaves.

Madrid coach Julen Lopetegui says both forwards needed to leave the match because of unspecified injuries.

Benzema did not start the second half, while Bale was replaced late after appearing to ask to be substituted.

Lopetegui says “the injuries to Karim and Gareth greatly limited what we could do.”

Madrid was already without injured backs Marcelo and Dani Carvajal, while Francisco “Isco” Alarcon is unavailable while he recovers from surgery for appendicitis.

The loss was Madrid’s fourth match in a row without scoring a goal.

After an international break, Madrid’s next game is at home against Levante on Oct. 20. It then hosts Viktoria Plzen in the Champions League before visiting Barcelona on Oct. 28.