Real Madrid will be looking to close the gap on Barcelonan and Atletico Madrid with three points against Malaga tomorrow.
Real Madrid haven’t made a bad start to the La Liga season at all with six wins, a draw and a defeat from their opening eight matches.
It’s only considered a bad start in Spain because both Barcelona and Atletico Madrid have been perfect so far this season, not dropping a single point from league games so far.
That’s created pressure on Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti who has some big selection choices to make this weekend. Here’s the side he may go with to play Malaga.
GK – Diego Lopez
Lopez is the reason there is so much speculation over the future of Iker Casillas at the moment. Lopez is a very competent goalkeeper and is likely to stay as the side’s number one until he makes a bad error.
RB – Alvaro Arbeloa
The former Liverpool right-back should retain his place on that side of the defence. He’s solid inside his own defensive third and has more than enough to his game to be a problem for the opposition up the other end.
CB – Raphael Varane
The Frenchman is one of the best young defensive talents in the world at the moment. He’s playing at a level you wouldn’t expect from someone of his age. Defensively he’s very solid and his height makes him an obvious threat at set pieces.
CB – Sergio Ramos
There has been some speculation over Ramos’ future as he appears to be pushing for a new contract. He embodies the current Real Madrid team and is arguably the best defender the club has available.
LB – Fabio Coentrao
Coentrao could easily have found himself at Manchester United right now but things have worked out for him because he’s in the first team and playing well. Expect him to retain his place.
RM – Angel di Maria
Di Maria is a key part of the current Real Madrid team because he’s such a versatile player. He’s quick down either flank but is also good enough to come inside and get involved with the central midfield play.
CM – Sami Khedira
The German is likely to be the player who sits in front of the back four, breaking up the play before quickly offloading to more creative players in more advanced positions around the pitch.
CM – Luka Modric
Modric is the player who will pull the strings in midfield for Real Madrid. He’s good on the ball, protects possession and can create a chance out of nothing with a clever through ball.
AM – Isco
Isco is likely to play at the top of the midfield, supporting the main striker. He links up well with Modric and is also aware of when he has to drop off, with too much space in behind him create pockets in the midfield.
LM – Cristiano Ronaldo
Ronaldo’s ability to be effective from the left hand side doesn’t need to be sold. He’ll switch flanks, he’ll play centrally and he’s a genuine threat wherever he is on the pitch because he can score a majestic goal in a second.
ST – Karim Benzema
Arsenal transfer target Karim Benzema is likely to lead the attack. The forward has been low on confidence so far this season but this is a good match for him to lead the attack, dominate and grab some goals.
image: © Jan S0L0