Football News

Real Madrid issue statement to deny Thibaut Courtois anxiety attack reports

By Harry Edwards

Published: 13:29, 6 October 2019

Real Madrid have denied Thibaut Courtois suffered from an anxiety attack in their Champions League draw with Club Brugge in midweek.

Courtois was substituted at half-time after conceding two goals in the first half, with Alphonse Areola coming on to replace him.

Why was Courtois substituted against Club Brugge? Five things to know…

  • Courtois started Real Madrid’s Champions League group stage game against Club Brugge in midweek.
  • The Belgian conceded two goals in the first half before being substituted at half-time.
  • Initial reports in Spain claimed the Belgian had suffered from an anxiety attack.
  • But Real Madrid have released a statement confirming Courtois was diagnosed with an acute case of gastroenteritis.
  • Courtois missed Real Madrid’s 4-2 win over Granada on Saturday, with Areola deputising.

With no official explanation at the time, speculation arose as to the circumstances behind Courtois’ early exit from the game. Some thought it was due to his performance, given that he was partially at fault for Club Brugge’s opening goal, while reports of a possible anxiety attack also emerged.

However, ahead of their La Liga game against Granada, Real Madrid released a statement on Courtois to squash such claims.

The statement read: “In response to certain reports regarding our player Thibaut Courtois, Real Madrid wishes to express the following:

“1. At no stage has our player been diagnosed with an alleged anxiety attack and these reports are therefore completely false.

“2. Thibaut Courtois has been diagnosed and treated for an acute case of gastroenteritis with dehydration and electrolyte imbalance, which meant that he was unable to complete Tuesday night’s game against Brugge.

“3. The player is currently responding well to treatment.”

Courtois was left out of Real Madrid’s matchday squad to face Granada, with Areola starting in goal and Diego Altube Suárez named as No.2.

Los Blancos secured a 4-2 win to tighten their grip at the top of the table thanks to goals from Gareth Bale, Eden Hazard, Luka Modric and James Rodriguez.

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Courtois’ tough time in Madrid

Courtois has not had the best time since joining Real Madrid from Chelsea in the summer of 2018.

In 33 La Liga starts the Belgian has conceded 42 goals, keeping just 10 clean sheets. The Belgian has also made 77 saves, with a success rate of 64.41%.

By contrast, in his final year at Chelsea, Courtois kept 15 clean sheets in 35 Premier League starts, conceding 34 goals.