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Official: Real Madrid squad list to face Barcelona



Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

All eyes on the Santiago Bernabeu this weekend as Barcelona and Real Madrid square off in what is an early title-decider. The Catalan giants are perched just above Carlo Ancelotti’s men thanks to a superior goal difference, but El Clasico could prove to be the first of many separators.

However, Madrid have been dealt a huge blow with Thibaut Courtois out injured. The Belgian star has not been included in the squad list for the game, and will be replaced by Andriy Lunin in goal.

Antonio Rudiger picked up an eye injury against Shakhtar Donetsk, but has been deemed fit enough to be a part of the Clasico. The entire first-team defence is fit for the hosts, including Lucas Vazquez.

Dani Ceballos is another name that has dropped out from the squad list owing to an injury.

Karim Benzema was dropped from the squad against Getafe last weekend, but made his return for the Champions League clash in midweek. He was not injured, and is now well-rested to take on Barcelona.

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Real Madrid News

Canadian international says playing against Luka Modric was a ‘lesson’ for him



Photo by THOMAS COEX/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid are blessed to have the services and loyalty of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos. The duo have run the show in the Merengues’ midfield for close to a decade and continue to deliver flawless performances to date.

Of the two, however, it is the Croatian who deserves the higher credit. The veteran is now 37 years of age, yet dominates the middle of the park with grace and poise like none other.

Stephen Estuaqio, an FC Porto player and Canada International, spoke earlier this week about why he considered Luka Modric to be a special player and compared him with Kevin de Bruyne to support his stance.

“I played against De Bruyne, but I ran behind Modrić. I couldn’t play against him. It’s crazy how he dictates the game and controls everything. It was a lesson for me,” he said on The 90th minute on Youtube.

With his contract running out next season, Real Madrid are looking to renew his deal by one year come June. Yet, it is difficult to see him continue beyond next season and his imminent departure will mark the end of an era at the club.

Thus, Modric could be an altered role come next season. With a young midfielder, possibly Jude Bellingham set to arrive, the veteran could move into a mentorship role with the occasional appearance in big games.

This season, however, Carlo Ancelotti will continue to use him as one of the backbones of the side and deploy the maestro in the must-win fixtures coming up later this month.

At 37 years of age, Modric has started 16 La Liga games over 24 appearances this season in the competition. He has scored four goals and provided three assists in that process in addition to creating eight big chances with an average of 1.8 key passes per game.

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