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Real Madrid prodigy expected to make much awaited debut against Mallorca – report

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Photo by THOMAS COEX/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid stealing Arda Guler from Barcelona’s doorstep was one of the highlights of the summer transfer window of 2023.

The Turkish starlet seemed to be on his way to Catalonia at one point, but the Merengues ended up beating their rivals to his signing.

Guler generated a positive impression in his first days at the club, excelling in training and stealing the headlines from major media outlets. Matters, however, went awry from there on.

Much awaited debut

Injuries have marred the youngster’s career at Real Madrid so far. From his initial meniscal tear that demanded surgery to the subsequent muscular blows he suffered, he has been completely restricted to the sidelines. 

Close to six months into the season, the player is yet to make his debut with Real Madrid. However, it no longer appears distant.

As revealed by AS (h/t The Madrid Zone), Guler is close to complete fitness and will be available for selection for Real Madrid’s game after the Christmas break.

He is thus expected to make his debut against Mallorca next week.

There are concerns about his fitness levels, considering the number of injuries he has had in the space of six months in Spain. As such, Real Madrid have been taking great precautions with the 18-year-old prodigy.

But, as things stand, all signs point towards the Turkish jewel making his debut vs Mallorca.

An uphill battle

Guler’s debut on the horizon. (Photo by THOMAS COEX/AFP via Getty Images)

There was a lot of uncertainty around Real Madrid’s system, dynamic, and approach at the beginning of the season.

Incorporating into the manager’s setup at that point would have been easier for Guler than the current scenario where he battles with some of the best in the business.

As an attacking midfielder, the youngster operates in the same niche as Jude Bellingham who is currently the first name on Real Madrid’s team sheet.

Moreover, Brahim Diaz has also made a strong case in recent weeks and will serve as a direct competitor.

Los Blancos will look to incorporate Guler slowly and without much pressure, for he was always a signing for the long term. His fitness will always be the priority, needless to say.

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Features

Real Madrid’s best lineup next season with Kroos retiring, Mbappe and Endrick joining

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Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP via Getty Images

It is set up to be a transformative summer for Real Madrid. After the UEFA Champions League final has concluded and the grand showdown finally has a victor, the Merengues are expected to undergo a squad revamp.

Indeed, the Santiago Bernabeu is preparing to welcome several high-profile signings, while also bidding farewell to some beloved Madrid legends.

Considering the potential arrivals of Kylian Mbappe and Endrick, as well as Toni Kroos’ recent retirement, here is how Real Madrid could shape up next season:

Goalkeeper

Having made a long-awaited return from injury, Thibaut Courtois is anticipated to guard Real Madrid’s goal next season once more.

The Belgian goalie has already started featuring in the starting XI and is expected to play against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League final, too.

As such, his place for next season is hardly in doubt. However, unlike previous seasons, he will face much fiercer competition from Andriy Lunin, who has enjoyed a stellar campaign.

Defence

Fortifications in the defensive line remain high on Real Madrid’s priority list in the upcoming summer transfer window. However, even with the given options the Royal Whites boast assurance and grit in their back-line.

The likely occupants on the flanks would be Dani Carvajal and Ferland Mendy, who have both produced great exhibitions throughout the campaign.

Ferland Mendy has the full trust of Carlo Ancelotti. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Carvajal is known to punish defensive lines and on the defensive end, his anticipation of forwards has been equally appreciable.

Meanwhile, Mendy’s resurgence this season has earned him immense faith from the coaching staff, as his defensive aptitude continues to set him apart.

In the centre-back positions, Real Madrid are expected to rely on the dependable figures of Antonio Rudiger and Eder Militao.

Real Madrid consider Rudiger to be indispensable owing to his front-footed style and the important role he has had to play amidst the injury crisis. Similarly, Militao is valued by the team as he proceeds to regain match fitness after recovering from a long-term injury.

Midfield

The void of Toni Kroos in midfield will compel coach Carlo Ancelotti and co. to
reconsider their midfield strategy.

Real Madrid will be unable to count on Kroos next season. (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)

Thankfully for Real Madrid, their succession stage had begun a while ago and they have ample options to trust in the center of the park.

With Aurelien Tchouameni protecting the base of midfield, Real Madrid will possess security and deep progression.

Ahead, occupying the interior midfield positions, Fede Valverde and Eduardo Camavinga are well-suited to provide a combination of energy off the ball and threat in possession.

And to put the cherry on top, Jude Bellingham’s place as the number 10 behind the two strikers would certify his status as a pivotal playmaker and scorer in the team’s setup.

However, he is adept at making third-man runs and connecting the midfield with the offence and could play deeper to not only make up for Kroos’ absence but also facilitate more options up front.

Attack

Real Madrid’s offensive department is where the largest reform is expected to take place.

Kylian Mbappe’s goalscoring instincts need little introduction by now and he is thus anticipated to be fielded as the striker.

Vinicius Jr. is expected to take up the position as a secondary striker drifting from the left, something he has become quite accustomed to this season.

Endrick will have to battle for a starting spot. (Photo by Alexandre Schneider/Getty Images)

It is worth noting that Endrick could also play a part by either replacing Vinicius off the bench and playing off Mbappe.

It remains to be seen how many men forward Ancelotti will commit to but the presence of Mbappe and Vinicius seems set in stone, given their huge profiles and status in world football. How the manager uses Rodrygo Goes will be interesting to see as well.

All in all, considering Ancelotti’s proficiency in profiling players, Madrid fans can expect to see these stars play in favourable environments.

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