In light of participation in their country’s Copa America campaign, Higuain, Di Maria and Gago have been given two weeks holiday to recover. However, where Higuain and Di Maria are then expected to join up with the rest of Los Blancos’ squad on August 1 for their tour of Asia, Gago is expected to remain in Spain alongside the likes of Lassana Diarra, Pedro Leon and Royston Drenthe as very much out of Jose Mourinho’s plans.
Gago is alongside this trio of players not to have been given a squad number for 2011/12, with new midfield signing Nuri Sahin taking the Argentine’s No 5 shirt, Mesut Ozil taking Diarra’s No 10 and Jose Callejon taking Leon’s No 21.
Argentine Gago has struggled to break through under Mourinho, straining knee ligaments in August in an injury that then returned to trouble him through Autumn. March 2011’s muscle injury then ruled him again for a month.
In all, the 25-year-old managed just one League start for Real in 2010/11, through both these recurring injury problems, and Mourinho’s perceived lack of trust in his defensive credentials. Gago has been linked with a switch to the Premier League or Serie A.