MADRID, Oct. 15 (Xinhua) -- Real Madrid face a problem in covering the position of left back after it was confirmed that Marcelo will be out of action for the next three months.
The Brazilian, who has been first choice for nearly all of the season broke the fifth metatarsal bone in his right foot while training with his national team. He has had the bone set, but will not play again before the middle of January 2013.
Marcelo's injury is clearly posing some trouble after Fabio Coentrao, who would be his natural replacement, is also going to be out of action for around a month.
Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho was not left too many alternatives, with his first choice being Real Madrid B team's impressive left back Jorge Casado.
Mourinho has never shown much faith in players from the Real Madrid B-team, however, and is more likely to switch Alvaro Arbeloa from his usual position of right back across to the left and bring Michael Essien into the team to play on the right.
Other options include moving Sergio Ramos across to right back and playing Raul Albiol in central defense or playing Albiol as a right back with Arbeloa on the left.
Playing Arbeloa on the left would help make Madrid defensively stronger in that role, but there is little doubt Real Madrid will miss Marcelo's penetrating attacking runs down that flank.