Following their incredible comeback victory against Chelsea in the quarterfinals, Real Madrid now gear up for another stern test, facing another Premier League giant in Manchester City.
Carlo Ancelotti’s 20-man squad for the trip to the Etihad Stadium has been officially announced.
Jesus Vallejo returns to the list in defence, alongside Nacho, Eder Militao and David Alaba. The latter two will be expected to marshal the backline in the crunch tie.
After deputising at left-back against Osasuna, Nacho could be rotated for Ferland Mendy or Marcelo, who are once again named in the squad, with Dani Carvajal on the right.
Isco is included in the midfield, alongside Dani Ceballos, Lucas Vazquez and Eduardo Camavinga, with the usual suspects Toni Kroos, Casemiro, Luka Modric and Fede Valverde.
In attack, Gareth Bale gets the call-up after being left out against Osasuna, while Marco Asensio keeps his place after a goal at the weekend. Rodrygo is named once again as a result of his white-hot form both as a starter and especially coming off the bench.
Madrid’s two attacking talismans Karim Benzema and Vinicius Jr. round off the list. They will be crucial in breaking down a strong City side.
Goalkeepers: Courtois, Lunin, Fuidias
Defenders: Carvajal, Militao, Alaba, Vallejo, Nacho, Marcelo, F. Mendy
Midfielders: Kroos, Modric, Casemiro, Valverde, Vazquez, Dani Ceballos, Isco, Camavinga
Forwards: Benzema, Asensio, Bale, Vinicius Jr, Rodrygo
Ancelotti sets a target for Real Madrid to achieve before facing Barcelona in La Liga
Real Madrid are currently the frontrunners to win the La Liga title this season, having established a solid lead atop the table.
After 26 matchdays, Carlo Ancelotti’s Los Blancos have built a six-point lead over second-placed Girona and are eight clear of arch-rivals Barcelona in third.
Ancelotti sets a target
While Real Madrid have already faced Girona and Atletico Madrid twice in La Liga already, they still have to face Barcelona for the second time.
And, as per AS, manager Carlo Ancelotti has set a target for his Real Madrid side to achieve before they face off against Xavi Hernandez’s Barça in a few weeks.
Los Blancos host their bitter rivals at the Santiago Bernabeu in the weekend of April 20-21, in matchweek 32.
And before that, Ancelotti wants Real Madrid to reach 80 points in La Liga, which he believes is the safety point for his team to go on to win the title.
As things stand, the Merengues are on 65 points from 26 games and have five matches to play in the league before they face Barcelona.
And for them to achieve Ancelotti’s intended target, they will have to win each of their matches between now and April 20, which will be anything but straightforward.
After all, Real Madrid are set to face Valencia at a hostile Mestalla this weekend before they take on a Celta Vigo side battling to avoid relegation next week.
Following that, they face a tricky Osasuna side away from home and Athletic Club at home while they will also take on Copa del Rey finalists RCD Mallorca.
Ancelotti wants the La Liga title race wrapped up by this point so that the team can face Barcelona without any pressure and instead keep their focus on the UEFA Champions League, provided they progress in the tournament.
It will be easier said than done, but if we have learned anything from Real Madrid this season, it is that they thrive in the face of adversities.