Luka Modric hopes to play for Real Madrid again this season

Real Madrid midfielder Luka Modric says his aim is to return from injury before the end of the current La Liga campaign.

Modric strained ligaments in his right knee during Saturday's 3-1 win over Malaga at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, an injury which typically sidelines a player for five to six weeks.

That timeframe would make it difficult for the Croatia international to make it back for the end of the domestic campaign on May 24, however he might be able to feature should Madrid reach the Champions League final in Berlin on June 6.

The 29-year-old told Sportske Novosti, in quotes reported by AS, that the he had known straight away that the injury was a serious one, but he was now focusing on recovering as quickly as possible in the hope of contributing to the end of Madrid's La Liga season.

"I felt dizzy for the blow I received," Modric said. "It really hurt a lot, I knew immediately that something had happened. I am sad to be injured again, but I must keep my head up.

"My objective is to recover before the end of the season. Maybe I can come back quickly and play some games in La Liga. I am going to try with all my strength."

This is the second serious injury Modric has suffered this season, having earlier torn a hamstring on international duty for Croatia last November. He only returned from that layoff in early March, and then started seven games for Madrid over the next 34 days -- leading national team doctor Boris Nemec to criticise Blancos coach Carlo Ancelotti for not easing the player more gradually back into the team.

However, Modric himself said he had felt no ill-effects on his return, and he was now aiming to get back with his teammates again as quickly as he could.

"After four months injured it had all been very good again," he said. "I had begun to get my best form back. But now this comes. I must keep my head up to try and get back playing with my teammates as soon as possible."

Modric is one of a number of Madrid players who will miss Wednesday's Champions League quarterfinal second leg at home to Atletico Madrid, with Gareth Bale also sidelined with a calf muscle problem, Marcelo suspended, and Karim Benzema now also out with a knee knock.

Atletico centre-forward Fernando Torres told AS that such absentees were a blow for Madrid, but the super-rich Bernabeu club should really have a deep enough squad to cover.

"[Modric] is an important player, as Bale is, but Madrid have great players, like Sergio Ramos and Cristiano Ronaldo," he said. "When you have a squad like Madrid's some absences do not really make a difference. It would not be fair to say that."