Real Madrid play host to Atletico de Madrid on Matchday 13 of La Liga Santander. The two sides will contest in a late Saturday evening kickoff at the Alfredo de Stefano Stadium.
Real Madrid are on their way to returning to their best ways and Atletico, on the other hand, are a team with immense confidence and positive results.
Atletico are placed right on top of the points table and Zidane’s side will have the opportunity to half the points deficit between the two sides from six to three on Saturday. An unchanged starting eleven will most likely take to the field against Diego Simeone’s team. An exception to the team could be Asensio who will replace Rodrygo in the starting eleven to strike the right balance for Zidane against a defensive-minded Atletico side.
Luka Jovic is out of contention for this fixture for the Whites with an injury. Here’s how Real could take to the field on Saturday –
Thibaut Courtois would be taking charge for Real Madrid between the sticks. The Belgian has held two consecutive clean sheets against Sevilla and Borussia Monchengladbach and will be seeking for his third against his former employer, Atletico Madrid. Dani Carvajal is expected to return to the starting eleven after nursing his injury over the past two weeks.
The centre back pairing will be the ever reliant duo of Raphael Varane and Sergio Ramos. The latter made his return to the side in midweek and his absence certainly pinched Los Blancos. Ferland Mendy will be occupying the left-back position. The Frenchman was commanding against Borussia in terms of defending and would hope to repeat the feat.
Luka Modric was an outstanding performer in the Champions League and will certainly be a part of proceedings in this Madrid derby. It would be interesting to see if Federico Valverde would feature in this game off the substitutes bench. Casemiro is set to join Modric in midfield after an industrious display in midweek. Casemiro will be crucial in keeping the Atleti attack at bay.
Toni Kroos would join the midfield to complete one of history’s most decorated midfield trident. Kroos and Modric would have to be on their heals at all times if they have to catch Atleti on the counter. The duo will have to spread out the play well for Zidane’s plan to materialise in the season’s first Madrid derby.
Asensio will be starting at the right-hand side ahead of Rodrygo who started in midweek and performed well. Zidane would want to have more options to open up play and an additional midfielder cum attacker in Marco Asensio would come in handy. Karim Benzema would be seeking to continue his form from the previous fixture. The striker has become a focal point in the side since Cristiano’s departure and Zidane will be relying on his French striker for goals upfront against Atleti. Vinicius Jr is expected to retain his place in the line up despite an ordinary performance against the German opposition.
Predicted Real Madrid Line-Up