Real Madrid's Welsh forward Gareth Bale (L), Real Madrid's Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois (C) and Real Madrid's Belgian forward Eden Hazard attend a training session on the eve of the UEFA Champions League Group A football match between Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid CF at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris on September 17, 2019. (Photo by GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT / AFP)

Real Madrid will have a stern test ahead when they welcome Manchester City at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday, in the UEFA Champions League. The Spanish giants are coming on the back of a 1-0 defeat to Levante, and it will be imperative for them to return to winning ways if they are to have any hopes of advancing further into the competition.

Here is how Los Blancos could line up against the Premier League champions this midweek.

Formation: 4-3-3

Defence

With Alvaro Odriozola joining Bayern Munich on loan in January, Dani Carvajal is more than likely to retain his place at right-back. Manager Zinedine Zidane has preferred Marcelo on the opposite flank, ahead of Ferland Mendy and we could thus expect the Brazilian to once again operate at left-back this midweek.

Real Madrid are unlikely to make any changes in central defence either, with Sergio Ramos accompanying Raphael Varane at the heart of the four-man backline. Nacho remains an alternative should they need one while Eder Militao is also available.

Thibaut Courtois is set to retain his place in between the sticks, ahead of Alphonso Areola. The Belgian has enjoyed a bright season and will be hoping to preserve yet another clean sheet.

Midfield

Zidane is also unlikely to make any alternation in central midfield. Luka Modric did start against Levante but was subbed off later in the game. The veteran Croatian is tipped to retain his place in the side, ahead of Federico Valverde.

Modric could partner Toni Kroos in the middle third of the pitch. They could operate just ahead of Casemiro, in the holding midfield role. The Brazilian will play a key role in mopping up loose balls, and it will be interesting to see whether or not he can outclass Rodri in the Manchester City squad.

Attack

Eden Hazard has been ruled out against Manchester City after picking up a fresh knock in the defeat to Levante. This could serve as a massive blow for Los Merengues, who are also likely to miss out on the services of Gareth Bale. The Welshman, however, has not been officially ruled out.

Rodrygo has not been involved in the past four league games and has been demoted to the RM Castilla squad. Therefore, we could pretty much expect Isco to once again operate at right-wing, with Vinicius Junior starting on the opposite flank, ahead of Lucas Vazquez and James Rodriguez.

These two will look to provide offensive support to lone striker Karim Benzema, whose performance could pretty much shape Real Madrid’s fate in this encounter.

Jack O’Brien

A 22 y/o football nerd seeking my way into football writing. I love Irish football and also the Premier League. A huge Arsenal fan! Aside from writing, I like to spend my time fishing and drinking beer.