3 Real Madrid players who must step up if Casemiro, Alaba can’t play vs. Manchester City

Casemiro, David Alaba, Real Madrid (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Casemiro, David Alaba, Real Madrid (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images) /
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Fede Valverde, Eduardo Camavinga, Real Madrid
Fede Valverde, Eduardo Camavinga, Real Madrid (Photo by Alvaro Medranda/Eurasia Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Fede Valverde or Eduardo Camavinga

This one’s a bit trickier to concoct. We don’t know who the right-winger is going to be for Real Madrid. If it is Fede Valverde, then Eduardo Camavinga would start as a midfielder. If it is Rodrygo, then we might see Fede as a defensive midfielder, or at least, in a midfield-three.

Whoever it is, they’ll have to up their game by a lot. If it is Camavinga starting there, then he needs to make sure that he isn’t rash with his decision making off the ball, and keeps a steady check of everything going around him so that he doesn’t leave a lot of space.

It’s actually worth considering that, in my opinion, there is more debate about who is going to start as the eight between Camavinga and Kroos than there is between Valverde and Kroos. Or, at least, there should be. Valverde can work as a CDM as long as there is enough support from the other midfielders. Valverde in general, I feel, is the kind of player that would play well at any position, especially in big games. But, Camavinga’s best position is when he plays as an eight.

Again, most of it depends on what Ancelotti wants Real Madrid to do, but I hope that whoever it is out of these two midfield prodigies, they perform well, because Real need every bit of help in defense that they can get.

I’d play Fede Valverde as a makeshift right-winger and ask him to drop deep and back while defending, around the right halfspace. Camavinga would then be able to play in the midfield, and if the plan is to press high, then he can play as an eight, but if they are to sit back, then he’d be fine playing as a six. Rodrygo, in that case, could be brought on in the second half to provide the team with some fresh legs in the attack.

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It’s a very intriguing and, frankly, gut-wrenching contest I really don’t have any expectations from. One of the few things going for Real Madrid is their will and mentality to win every single game, and if our players can somehow allow that to make themselves transcend everyone else on the pitch, it’ll be huge to decide the tie. Either way, these three or four players that I mentioned above would have to transcend anyway, because if not, then the tie is over before it even begins.