Real Madrid backs Nadal after doping accusations from France

MADRID (AP) Real Madrid has joined the defense of Rafael Nadal after doping accusations made by a former French minister.

The Spanish soccer giant expressed its ''total support'' for the 14-time Grand Slam winner in a statement Saturday which called the accusations by former French Minister for Health and Sport Roselyne Bachelot ''unjustifiable and intolerable.''

Bachelot claimed on French television on Thursday that the Spaniard's seven-month injury hiatus in 2012 was ''probably due to a positive doping test.''

Nadal is a prominent fan of Madrid and a ''member of honor'' of the club.

Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane also backed Nadal.

''I feel bad for what is being said,'' the former France great said. ''Everyone who likes sports likes Nadal, whether you are French, American, he is spectacular.''

The Spanish Olympic Committee, national team manager Vicente del Bosque and Barcelona coach Luis Enrique have also supported Nadal, who denies any wrongdoing.

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