- Associated Press - Friday, September 9, 2016

MADRID (AP) - Cristiano Ronaldo will play in his first match of the season on Saturday after recovering from the left knee injury he picked up in the European Championship final.

Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said Friday that Ronaldo will play when Madrid hosts Osasuna in the Spanish league.

“We are happy to have him back and we will try to keep him well,” Zidane said. “This is his first match of the season, 60 days since his last one.”

Four days later, Madrid starts the defense of its Champions League title when it hosts Sporting Lisbon, one of Ronaldo’s former clubs.

Ronaldo has been sidelined since injuring his left knee in a collision with France forward Dimitri Payet during the Euro 2016 final on July 10. Portugal won, beating France 1-0 in extra time.

Madrid won the UEFA Super Cup and its opening two matches in the Spanish league without Ronaldo.

Zidane also said that striker Karim Benzema is ready for his first match of the season.

The coach has, however, dropped James Rodriguez, Marcelo and Casemiro from the squad for Osasuna to give them extra rest following matches with their national teams.

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