Arbeloa returns to Real Madrid training

Real Madrid have received a timely fitness boost after full-back Alvaro Arbeloa returned to training following a knee injury.

The 31-year-old has been absent for the past two months after picking up the injury in March's 2-2 draw at local rivals Atletico Madrid.

However, the former Liverpool defender joined his team-mates as they began preparations for Sunday's La Liga encounter with Valencia at the Bernabeu.

Arbeloa will bolster Carlo Ancelotti's options ahead of the league run-in, with Real attempting to gun down a six-point lead to table-toppers Atleti.

Though Real possess a game in hand, they will need to overtake their rivals' points tally due to an inferior head-to-head record.

He also comes into contention to feature in the UEFA Champions League final - also against Atleti - on May 24, after Real earned a superb 5-0 aggregate victory over reigning champions Bayern Munich.

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque will also have the chance to run the rule over Arbeloa, as he finalises his squad for the defence of the FIFA World Cup - which starts in June.