Real Madrid will lock horns with a familiar opponent in Shakhtar Donetsk in the third matchday of the UEFA Champions League 2022/23 on Wednesday night at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Ahead of the game, Real Madrid have released the full squad list of players for the encounter against the Ukrainian giants.
As expected and confirmed by manager Carlo Ancelotti, Thibaut Courtois is not in the squad as he recovers from sciatica. The Belgian is unlikely to be rushed back into action with Los Blancos wanting him to be ready for El Clasico in two weeks’ time.
Instead, Andriy Lunin will step into the lineup in goal as he did at the weekend against Osasuna. Luis Lopez and Lucas Canizares will act as his understudies.
Dani Ceballos is another notable absentee for Real Madrid, with Ancelotti confirming in the pre-match presser that the midfielder has picked up a hamstring injury.
There is some positive news as well, as Lucas Vazquez has returned to the squad after missing the last three matches due to injury.
Luka Modric is also welcomed back into the fold by the Real Madrid boss after the veteran was not part of the match against Osasuna due to a minor knock. Eduardo Camavinga, who had trained in the indoor facilities on Monday, is also fit and named in the squad list.
Karim Benzema, Vinicius Jr, Rodrygo Goes, Eden Hazard, Marco Asensio and Mariano Diaz form the attacking contingent for the Spanish capital club.
Real Madrid maintain full confidence in Turkish starlet despite injury woes
Arda Guler’s Real Madrid stint has not gotten off to the start he would have hoped to have given the expectation that preceded the transfer.
Having joined in the summer after Real Madrid outbid their competition to win him over from Fenerbahce for a 20-million-euro fee, buzz was high as the winger was expected to slot into the team quite seamlessly, albeit on a rotational basis.
Unfortunately for the 18-year-old, he has been constantly marred by injuries since completing the move.
Reports have stated that after Guler picked up his third injury since his move, Real Madrid have been concerned and want to take things slow with the player to ensure he is fit as soon as possible after an injury to his quadriceps this time.
The Turk is yet to make his competitive debut for the club, and Real Madrid even sacked their medical chief in November, in light of their injury crises since the beginning of the season.
No loan deal for Guler
However, according to Fabrizio Romano in a recent YouTube video, he states that Madrid maintain full trust and patience in the youngster.
Despite his bad luck with injuries, the latest of which he is scheduled to return from after Christmas, the Galacticos have no intention of loaning out Guler to Turkish clubs despite lots of speculation of them doing so of late.
Romano states that Madrid remain firm on not shaking things up too much with the squad, and they want to keep their roster stable, including Arda Guler.
They want to extend their full support and protection to the player as he aims to return to full fitness and finally make his bow for Madrid either by the end of this month or in 2024.