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Shakhtar Donetsk manager jokes about Real Madrid resting Luka Modric for UCL clash

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Photo by Christian Hofer/Getty Images

Luka Modric was one of the few Real Madrid players who had picked up a knock during the international break.

Although the midfielder featured in both the matches against Denmark and Austria, he returned to Santiago Bernabeu with muscle overload. He was subsequently ruled out for a period of up to ten days.

However, it has been recently revealed that Modric might be fit for tomorrow’s UEFA Champions League encounter against Shakhtar Donetsk.

Reacting to the news, Shakhtar manager Igor Jovicevic voiced his disapproval over the prospect of Modric starting the game tomorrow and urged Carlo Ancelotti to rest the veteran midfielder for the upcoming El Clasico.

“I’m glad Luka Modric is fine for tomorrow, but I would have preferred him not to play. Rest him for El Clasico,” he said, as quoted by Melchor Ruiz.

Real Madrid are slated to face FC Barcelona less than a fortnight from now, in what could be a significant tie in the context of the title race. However, Los Blancos are due to play three games before they meet their arch-rivals, two of which are against Shakhtar.

Speaking ahead of the game, Ancelotti himself dismissed any real possibility of Modric starting against Donetsk tomorrow, stating: “I’m not sure if he will start tomorrow.”

Modric, for his part, is coming on the back of a gruelling international break and subsequent muscle fatigue. Hence, the likelihood of him starting against Shakhtar remains low, although the veteran will certainly look to get back into the thick of things when Real Madrid meet Getafe later this weekend.

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Real Madrid News

Brahim, Tchouameni start in a 4-3-1-2: How Real Madrid could lineup against Sevilla

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Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid are set to play hosts to Sevilla this evening, in what could prove to be a critical match in the context of the title race.

Although Los Blancos hold a formidable lead at the top of the table, the club are coming on the back of a disappointing result against Rayo Vallecano.

Dropping more points against Sevilla tonight could prove to be costly, especially with Barcelona and Girona breathing down their necks.

Potential Real Madrid lineup vs Sevilla

As Real Madrid approach this crucial game, coach Carlo Ancelotti has to make several arrangements, especially with so many players ruled out either due to injury or suspension.

Defence

Starting from the goalkeeper position, Thibaut Courtois remains out, which means Andriy Lunin should continue in between the sticks, ahead of the unhappy Kepa Arrizabalaga.

In the right-back position, Ancelotti is likely to opt for Lucas Vazquez, as Dani Carvajal is suspended after picking up two yellow cards in the last game.

On a bright note, though, Antonio Rudiger is back and should return to central defence. He will be accompanied by Nacho Fernandez at the heart of Real Madrid’s four-man backline.

Rudiger to return after a brief spell on the sidelines (Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images)

Elsewhere in defence, Ferland Mendy should continue to start ahead of Fran Garcia in the left-back position.

Midfield

Moving into midfield, Eduardo Camavinga has been ruled out due to suspension. However, Ancelotti does have a myriad of options in the middle of the park.

Aurelien Tchouameni should continue to operate in the number six position, just behind the two interior midfielders Toni Kroos and Federico Valverde.

Luka Modric is an option on the bench, should Ancelotti require more experience in the middle.

Attack

As for the attack, the Real Madrid frontline should be led by Brahim Diaz once again, even though he faces fierce competition from Joselu.

Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo, on the other hand, are guaranteed choices in the wide attacking spaces, though Ancelotti does have Arda Guler and Alvaro Rodriguez as potential alternatives.

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