After a disappointing draw against CA Osasuna, Real Madrid sealed a 2-1 away win against Elche last Saturday in LaLiga and is hosting Shakhtar Donetsk at the Santiago Bernabeu for a UEFA Champions League clash on Wednesday. The Royal Whites are second on the LaLiga table and it’s the same when it comes to their position on the UCL Group D table.
Carlo Ancelotti’s Real Madrid is right behind Sheriff Tiraspol on the table with the same number of points (6). Following a shock defeat against the current group leaders, Real Madrid made a promising comeback in their last UCL match with a 1-0 away victory over Inter at Stadio San Siro.
Here is how Real Madrid can line up against the Ukrainian champions
Roberto De Zerbi’s Shakhtar Donetsk, on the other hand, has struggled to cope with the pressure of the European competition till now. They are currently at the bottom of their group with three games played – following one 0-0 draw against Inter and 5-0 and 2-0 defeats against Real Madrid and Sheriff Tiraspol respectively.
Ancelotti will surely look to capitalize on this opportunity as a win in this game may secure them a place in the knockouts. For that to happen, the veteran Italian manager has got some work to do and the most important of those is to pick the best starting eleven that can ensure his side’s victory.
At the moment, Real Madrid have three players out with injury – Gareth Bale is struggling with his hamstring while Dani Ceballos is suffering from an ankle injury. Federico Valverde is also sidelined with a knee problem. While these three are recovering, the team’s talisman Karim Benzema along with the youngster Rodrygo has been listed as doubtful for this match.
Benzema although is looking likely to start the game, partnered with Vinicius Junior and Eden Hazard in the front three. The forever reliable midfield trio of Toni Kroos, Casemiro and Luka Modric may return to stabilize the team’s midfield. The back four could be Dani Carvajal as a right-back, Eder Militao and David Alaba as center-backs and Ferland Mendy as left-back with Thibaut Courtois in goal.
So, Real Madrid’s line-up may look like this,
Probable Starting Eleven: Thibaut Courtois (goalkeeper), Dani Carvajal (right-back), Eder Militao (right center-back), David Alaba (left center-back), Ferland Mendy (left-back), Toni Kroos (left central midfielder), Casemiro (central defensive midfielder), Luka Modric (right central midfielder), Eden Hazard (left-winger), Karim Benzema (center-forward), Vinicius Junior (right-winger).
Shakhtar is yet to score a goal in the tournament, but the upcoming fixture could well become a game-changer for them. They defeated the Los Blancos twice last season with the latter failing to score a single goal against Shakhtar. After a comfortable 4-1 win in the domestic league against Desna, De Zerbi’s men will look to make the most out of their chances on Wednesday to change their fate in this season’s UCL.
Will Carlo’s prestigious squad walk away with an easy win or will Shakhtar again produce a late miracle like they did against AS Monaco – well, we will have to keep our eyes glued to the match to witness the outcome.