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Kroos, Joselu start in a 4-4-2: How Real Madrid could line up against Juventus

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Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images

Real Madrid will look to end their pre-season tour of the United States of America on a high when they take on Juventus at the Camping World Stadium in Orlando tonight.

Los Blancos will still be licking their wounds from the 3-0 defeat at the hands of Barcelona this past weekend. Even though it was only a pre-season encounter, Carlo Ancelotti’s men will be unhappy with losing an El Clasico and would be gunning to produce a strong reaction.

Real Madrid will come up against a Juventus side who had their first pre-season game in the US against Barcelona cancelled. Following that, the Bianconeri beat AC Milan in a penalty shootout after the game ended 2-2.

Real Madrid will once again be without the services of new signing Arda Guler, who has been sent back to Spain to continue his recovery from a knee injury. Ferland Mendy also misses out due to injury. There are unlikely to be any other absentees for the Spanish capital club.

This will be the final pre-season match for the Merengues before they kick off their La Liga campaign against Athletic Club in over a week. And here’s how Ancelotti could set his team up against Juve at the Camping World Stadium.

Starters

Considering that he did not play in the first two friendlies against AC Milan and Manchester United, Thibaut Courtois is expected to start again in goal for Real Madrid against Juventus.

There should be some major changes in the rest of the lineup, though, with Ancelotti likely to hand out opportunities to the players who did not start in the Clasico.

As such, Fran Garcia should replace Mendy at left-back, following the Frenchman’s injury during El Clasico, which will sideline him for an extended period. Dani Carvajal, though, should retain his spot at right-back.

Meanwhile, Antonio Rudiger and captain Nacho Fernandez should start at the heart of the defence, replacing the first-choice duo of Eder Militao and David Alaba.

Rudiger to start against Juventus? (Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images)

Aurelien Tchouameni has showcased good form so far in pre-season, but Ancelotti is likely to replace him with Toni Kroos in the pivot position as part of the midfield diamond setup.

Fellow veteran Luka Modric should also return to the starting lineup as one of the interior midfielders, potentially at the expense of Federico Valverde. Eduardo Camavinga should retain his spot in the side.

Jude Bellingham has been a revelation thus far in pre-season and Ancelotti is unlikely to take his marquee signing out of the spotlight. It would mean that both Brahim Diaz and Nico Paz will have to wait for their chances until the second half.

New signing Joselu has shown good attributes in the limited minutes he has received so far on the pre-season tour and could be in line for a start up top. The Spaniard should be partnered with Vinicius Jr, who will be looking to get into goalscoring form before the season starts.

Real Madrid Predicted XI: Courtois; Carvajal, Rudiger, Nacho, Garcia; Kroos; Modric, Camavinga; Bellingham; Joselu, Vinicius.

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MU Shorts

How can Euro 2024 stardom shape the future of Real Madrid’s teenage prodigy?

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Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images

Real Madrid and Turkey midfielder Arda Guler showcased his talent during Euro 2024, scoring a goal and assisting twice, firmly establishing himself as a key player for Turkey at just 19 years old. 

In the recent quarter-final match against the Netherlands, Guler’s exceptional skills were on full display when he provided a stunning assist to open the scoring. 

Demonstrating his technical prowess, Guler controlled the ball with his left foot and delivered a precise cross with his right, which, despite not being his dominant foot, highlighted his versatility.

Despite his strong efforts, though, the Dutch team managed to turn the game around within six minutes, dashing Turkey’s hopes of reaching the semi-finals. 

This outcome left Guler visibly dejected, but it also underscored his growing maturity. After the match, he took the time to console each of his teammates, showcasing leadership qualities beyond his years to emerge as one of the standout sensations of the Euros.

Real Madrid’s spot still in limbo?

With the tournament now behind him, questions arise about Guler’s future and what role he will play at Real Madrid in the upcoming 2024/2025 season. 

Arda Guler showcased leadership qualities beyond his age. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Last season, the young Turk struggled to secure significant playing time due to physical issues that plagued him for the first few months of the competition. 

However, his impressive performances towards the end of the season and at the European Championship may have changed his standing within the team.

As a result, Carlo Ancelotti, known for his ability to foster positive environments for his players, now faces the challenge of determining Guler’s role. 

His versatility allows him to play both in midfield and in attacking positions, but he will have to compete with established stars like Brahim Diaz, Rodrygo, Kylian Mbappe, and the young talent Endrick. The Italian coach must carefully consider how to integrate Guler into the squad effectively.

Ancelotti will be key to Guler’s future

The situation at Real Madrid appears challenging for Guler due to the fierce competition for limited spots, with many players deserving of a place in the team which is why Ancelotti’s decisions will be crucial in shaping Guler’s future at the club. 

Last season, his tenure was marred by injuries, and even when he was fit, Ancelotti often favoured more seasoned players. This preference was understandable, given that Guler’s return coincided with crucial matches in the latter half of the season.

Arda Guler scored a goal and assisted twice during Euro 2024. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

However, Guler has now proven his worth on the international stage, and his refusal to go out on loan indicates his determination to fight for a spot at Real Madrid. 

It will be fascinating to see how Ancelotti handles this situation and what opportunities he provides for Guler in the coming season.

Capping off a perfect journey

The young midfielder’s journey at the Euros has undoubtedly increased his profile, and his performance has likely caught the attention of many within the football world. 

As Guler continues to develop, his potential seems limitless. All this means that Real Madrid fans will now be eager to see how he fits into the team’s plans and whether he can secure a more prominent role. 

The upcoming season will be a crucial period for Guler, as he aims to build on his recent success and establish himself as a key player for both club and country.

In summary, Guler’s impressive showing at Euro 2024 has set the stage for an intriguing season ahead. His leadership and maturity, despite his young age, have marked him as a rising star in football. 

The challenge now lies with Carlo Ancelotti to harness Guler’s talent and integrate him effectively into a competitive Real Madrid squad. 

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