ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane confirmed that Cristiano Ronaldo won't play in the UEFA Super Cup against Sevilla on Aug. 9, and could miss the league opener against Real Sociedad 12 days later.
Ronaldo injured his knee early in Portugal's Euro 2016 final victory against France back on July 10, and after being given some time off has been busy rehabbing the injury.
Speaking to reporters ahead of Saturday's game against Chelsea in the International Champions Cup, Zidane gave an update on the status of Ronaldo, as well as others.
"Basically it looks like [Ronaldo's] injury requires a month of rehab, and we also have to make sure he's prepared," Zidane said through a translator on Friday. "We can't just put him in after not playing for a month. From the Super Cup to the start of the season there's 12 days, so we're not sure, but he'll be with us. But I don't think he'll play at least for the first [league] match."
The news was better about forward Karim Benzema, who has been dealing with a hip injury. While Benzema will miss Saturday's match (3 p.m. ET, ESPN), Zidane is hopeful that he'll play in the Super Cup.
"Obviously any injured player, it's something that is worrisome, and it's a tough injury where [Benzema] has had it for a while," Zidane said. "It's his hip. But overall, every day he's been working with the trainers and the medical staff and my hope is that he can play in the third match [of the ICC]. It's important for him to play in the third match as we'd like to be able to count on him for the Super Cup."
Zidane was also optimistic about the trio of James Rodriguez, Luka Modric, and Sergio Ramos -- all of whom were given time off after international duty this summer -- saying they had all nearly caught up with the main group in terms of fitness, though they may sit out Saturday's match.
"Right now, what they're doing is exactly the same as the other players; the same type of training and they're following the same plan," said Zidane. "[Saturday] in the morning, they'll train again, and then in the afternoon we'll see if they're able to play. The idea that we have is for all of them to be available on Aug. 9, for the Super Cup. And to be ready on Aug. 9, they definitely have to play on Aug. 3 in the last game of the ICC."
As for goalkeeper Keylor Navas, Zidane said the player was recovering well from the Achilles tendon injury that kept him out of this summer's Copa America, but was unsure if he would return in time for the Super Cup.
"I can't really speak about the [Super Cup] because we don't know, but it does look tough," he said. "When [Navas] returns to Europe he needs to go see the doctor that operated on him and continue the rehab plan."
If Navas doesn't recover in time, Zidane is confident that backup Kiko Casilla will step up.
"We're going to look to continue putting [Casilla] in the best position possible, we'll continue to work," he said. "We believe in him and we're happy with the work he's done.
Shifting focus to Saturday's game, Zidane said he wants to see "a little bit stronger team" against Chelsea.
Real lost the first match of the preseason competition 3-1 to Paris St. Germain, a match where Zidane bemoaned his side's lack of aggression.
"We want to see a little more rhythm, and more of the things that we've done in training recently," he told reporters in his pregame press conference. "That's why were looking forward to seeing the match. We're good, we're prepared."
He later added, "We some good things in the last game, and that's what we want to improve on. Overall, we want to show that we're better physically even though we're not at 100 percent. And obviously we want to give a show to the fans that are here."
An ICC spokesman said that 105,000 tickets had been sold for the match, meaning a considerable walkup crowd would be needed to exceed the 109,318 fans that witnessed Real's 3-1 defeat to Manchester United in the 2014 ICC, a record for a soccer match in the U.S.
"We have fans all over the world and it's enjoyable for us to play in front of those fans and know that they're able to see their team in person," he said.