Real Madrid gear up to host SC Braga in matchday four of the 2023/24 UEFA Champions League tomorrow night at the Santiago Bernabeu.
A win against the Portuguese club would guarantee the Merengues’ progression to the knockout stages of the competition.
Ahead of the contest, Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti has released the squad list of players he will have at his disposal for the contest.
And, in a huge positive, star midfielder Jude Bellingham features on the list even though there were some doubts about his availability due to a shoulder issue.
It does not, however, guarantee that the 20-year-old will take the field against Braga, but his inclusion on the squad list confirms that the possibility is not out of the question.
Arda Guler once again makes it to the list, for only the second time since joining Real Madrid in the summer and could finally make his debut tomorrow.
Nico Paz is another young talent to watch out for on the squad list and the Castilla prospect could also get some minutes if things go Madrid’s way.
Official: Real Madrid starting lineup against Napoli | UCL GW 5
Real Madrid are back in the Champions League following their impressive win against Cadiz on the weekend as they host Napoli at the Santiago Bernabeu for gameweek five.
They have already secured qualification to the round of 16, and even a point today would secure first place in the group.
With several players still injured, Carlo Ancelotti has opted for his best available starting lineup, with Daniel Carvajal taking responsibility of the captain’s armband at right-back. He will be aided by Ferland Mendy, who starts on the other side.
Meanwhile, in between them, David Alaba returns to the fold as the starting centre-back, partnering Antonio Rudiger. This duo has the responsibility of screening Andriy Lunin, who continues in goal in Kepa and Thibaut Courtois’ absence.
With both Eduardo Camavinga and Aurelien Tchouameni out, Toni Kroos gets the chance to play as the holding midfielder for two games in a row. Federico Valverde retains his spot, as well, while Dani Ceballos comes in for the injured Luka Modric in central midfield.
Rodrygo will spearhead the team’s frontline as one of the two twin forwards, while Brahim Diaz gets the nod over Joselu. Jude Bellingham is the final, and arguably the most important piece of the puzzle, playing behind the front-two.
Confirmed Madrid XI: Lunin; Carvajal, Rudiger, Alaba, Mendy; Valverde, Kroos, Ceballos; Bellingham; Diaz, Rodrygo