Real Madrid prepare to take on Barcelona in La Liga as their season-defining season continues after they beat Liverpool 3-1 on Tuesday night in the UEFA Champions League. Zinedine Zidane isn’t expected to make many changes, but some amendments may be called for as he’ll be dealing with players who aren’t fully recovered while he has to keep in mind that the squad will play Liverpool again next week.
Expected to be at his very best one again, Thibaut Courtois will be the man between the sticks for El Clasico. He was unlucky to concede on Tuesday night but he will want to continue his consistent almost-perfect performances as Real Madrid have a chance to go top of the league with a win if Atletico Madrid lose their match as well.
Not much is expected to change here in terms of the defenders that will be chosen since Sergio Ramos is still sidelined with injury while Raphael Varane is at home recovering from Covid-19. There is a very real chance that the manager goes with a back-three for this game but it’s a little doubtful due to the fact that going forward, things would be a little limited as to who he can pick.
The back four expected on the night will be the same players we saw against Liverpool. Lucas Vazquez will be on the right as Nacho Fernandez teams up with Eder Militao in defense, and they’ll want to impress just like they did on Tuesday night. On the left, Ferland Mendy will take his place.
The great news is that Federico Valverde is back and he can add a lot to the midfield. However, the Uruguayan is not expected to start the game but you can be almost sure that we’ll see him at some point in the second half. Carlos Casemiro will be starting right behind two of the greatest midfielders of our time as Luka Modric and Toni Kroos will want to create some more magical moments that they can look back on.
It’s unlikely that we’ll see any changes to the front three but if there would be, it may be to Marco Asensio. He looked tired towards the end against Liverpool and Zidane may opt to rest the Spaniard and go with the explosive Rodrygo Goes instead. If not, it’s extremely unlikely that we will see Asensio complete a full 90 minutes.
On the left and on an extreme high is Vinicius Junior, who had a game to remember after scoring a brace on Tuesday night. He’ll want to build on that – you don’t bench a player who is in the same position as Vinicius is right now. Up front, Karim Benzema will be wearing the captain’s armband and he’ll be ready to get his name on the score sheet.
Full Predicted Starting Lineup
Thibaut Courtois, Lucas Vazquez, Nacho Fernandez, Eder Militao, Ferland Mendy, Carlos Casemiro, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Rodrygo Goes, Vinicius Junior, Karim Benzema