Today will see a clash between two of the biggest teams in the pre-season as Real Madrid and Bayern Munich come up against each other. But what has got the football fraternity even more excited about the match is the fact that Zinedine Zidane and Carlo Ancelotti are coming up against each other for the first time. Ancelotti coached Zidane at Juventus and the Frenchman was his assistant when Madrid claimed their 10th European Cup crown by beating Atletico in Lisbon in 2014. After a spell at Real’s youth team, Castilla, Zidane is now in the top job at Madrid and led Los Blancos to another Champions League trophy with victory over Atletico Madrid for the second time – this time on penalties – at San Siro in May.
Both the teams are coming on the back of similar results after two matches as Bayern lost on penalties to AC Milan after a 3-3 draw with the Rossoneri in their first ICC clash, before thrashing Inter 4-1 on Saturday. Similarly, Zidane’s men lost 3-1 to PSG in their first ICC fixture, before a 3-2 win over Chelsea on Saturday.
Real scored three goals in the first half, courtesy of a double from Brazilian left-back Marcelo and one from Dominican forward Mariano, to bury the Blues to an early hole. Chelsea was able to fight back in the second half as Belgian midfielder Eden Hazard showcased his skills with a brace at the 80th minute and in injury time to close the gap to only one goal at the end.
In what will be good news for the Germans, Jerome Boateng has linked up with the Bayern squad after returning early from his holidays following Euro 2016. Meanwhile, Holger Badstuber has been training alone and Arjen Robben is back in Germany recovering from injury. Xabi Alonso is fit and will face his former club, but a number of players (including Arturo Vidal, Thomas Muller, Kingsley Coman, Manuel Neuer and Robert Lewandowski) are still on holiday.
For Madrid, Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale are both unavailable, while Karim Benzema is struggling to shake off a hip problem. The Portuguese suffered a knee injury in the final of Euro 2016, with the Welshman still not back from his holiday after Wales made it to the last four in France. Jesé is on the verge of a move to Paris Saint-Germain and will not feature as Madrid step up their preparations for the UEFA Super Cup against Sevilla in Trondheim on August 9.
The La Liga giants will most likely line-up in a 4-4-2 formation-