Marcelo set to miss Real Madrid’s Champions League second leg at Chelsea on election duty

Real Madrid are set to be without Marcelo for next week’s Champions League semi-final second leg against Chelsea after he was randomly chosen to work at a polling station during a regional election in Madrid the day before the match.

The Brazilian defender and his teammate Victor Chust, who is injured, have been selected to work during the election in the region around the capital Madrid next Tuesday. Unless Marcelo is excused from his election-day duties, he will be unable to travel with the team the day before the game. As reported in El Mundo, Real had appealed to the Electoral Commission but the request was denied.

Real did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the El Mundo report.

A four-time Champions League winner with Real, Marcelo started Tuesday’s 1-1 draw at home to Chelsea as fellow left-back Ferland Mendy was injured.

Marcelo obtained Spanish nationality in 2011, a common path for South American footballers in La Liga, where there is a limit on the number of players clubs can have from outside the European Union.

All Spanish nationals on the electoral register are liable to be called up to work at polling stations, for which they are paid €65 (£43), and require mitigating circumstances to be excused.

Footballers being called to work at polling stations is not uncommon: Levante goalkeeper Aitor Fernandez was named on a reserve list to work during a general election in 2019 but was excused as his side were playing Athletic Bilbao on voting day.

Athletic Bilbao’s Inaki Williams was also excused from working at a polling station in 2015 as voting clashed with a match against Levante.

Additional reporting by Reuters

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