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.
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.
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.
Modric, Camavinga start in a 4-4-2: How Real Madrid could line up against Union Berlin
Real Madrid will begin their quest for their 15th European crown as they start the 2023/24 UEFA Champions League season against Union Berlin in Group C tonight at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Real Madrid have made a solid start to the season, winning five in five in La Liga, although they have not always been convincing victories.
But Los Blancos have found a way to collect maximum points from difficult situations and will be eager to carry forward that form and momentum into Europe’s premier club competition.
Leading up to the game, Real Madrid have greeted both good and bad news on the injury front. Ferland Mendy is back in the squad for the match, which comes in as a big positive, while both Arda Guler and Vinicius Jr are closing in on a return.
However, onto bad news, in-form right-back Dani Carvajal picked up an injury and has been ruled out of the contest, and could potentially miss the derby against Atletico Madrid later this week.
With less than 12 hours left before kickoff, here’s how Real Madrid could line up against the German opposition, who are debuting in the UEFA Champions League.
With no Thibaut Courtois in the mix, on-loan goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga appears to be the preferred choice in goal ahead of Andriy Lunin. As such, the Spaniard should keep his place between the sticks tonight for Real Madrid against Union Berlin.
Dani Carvajal’s absence will see Lucas Vazquez start at right-back, as was confirmed by Carlo Ancelotti during his press conference. Meanwhile, Fran Garcia should make his UCL debut, slotting in at left-back despite the availability of Ferland Mendy.
At the heart of the defence, it is unlikely that Ancelotti will change the pairing of Antonio Rudiger and David Alaba, with captain Nacho Fernandez once again featuring off the bench.
As has been the case throughout this season, it is the midfield department that Ancelotti will have some major decisions to make.
Aurelien Tchouameni has been in fine form as the defensive midfielder this campaign, but the Frenchman could be rested tonight, with his compatriot, Eduardo Camavinga. starting as the lone pivot.
Meanwhile, Federico Valverde, who was on target against Real Sociedad over the weekend, should continue as one of the interiors, even though he recently revealed that he has been playing with an injured arm.
Luka Modric should make his second start of the season for Los Blancos, replacing fellow veteran Toni Kroos in the starting XI. Jude Bellingham will occupy the tip of the midfield diamond for Los Blancos.
As has been the case during Vinicius Jr’s absence, Rodrygo Goes and in-form forward Joselu will form the strike partnership up top.
Real Madrid Predicted Lineup: Kepa, Vazquez, Rudiger, Alabal, Garcia, Camavinga, Valverde, Modric, Bellingham, Rodrygo, Joselu.
Toni Kroos is certain to come on at some point in the second period to help Real Madrid provide control in the game. Fellow veteran Nacho Fernandez is also likely to be called upon to relieve one of the defenders.
Dani Ceballos and Ferland Mendy could make their first appearances of the season after their injury layoffs, while Brahim Diaz is also expected to get some minutes.