Espanyol’s fourth coach of the season debuts. Casemiro returns, Modric and Mendy are suspended.
Real Madrid are coming in hot in one of the easier remaining games of the season. Wins against Eibar, Valencia, Real Sociedad and Mallorca have seen Real Madrid move to the top of La Liga. Today Los Blancos have the chance to increase their lead in La liga with a win against a struggling Espanyol side.
Zidane will be looking for balance between a strong starting XI and rotations. In the Mallorca match, Zidane surprised many when he played a two-man midfield combined with four players in attack, and it worked out well. While we don’t expect another 4-2-4 lineup, we will most likely see some new changes in the starting lineup.
There will be no surprises in defense, Courtois, Ramos, Varane, Carvajal and Marcelo will most likely be starting.
Casemiro, who’s returning from suspension, Kroos and possibly Isco will start in midfield.
With Hazard, Benzema and Vinicius all in great form, Zidane has options upfront. He could play Vinicius or Hazard on the left, Asensio on the right, and Benzema between them.
With only 5 wins and 24 points, Espanyol are dead last in La Liga. Theoretically they have a chance of survival but it’s not looking good for them. Yesterday, they sacked their third head coach of the season. Rufete has taken his place and will debut tonight.
A positive restart of the season was followed by preventable losses against Real Betis and Levante. Tonight, they are expected to sit back and counter attack. Former Real Madrid player, Raul De Tomas, has struggled with injuries since La Liga returned. As a result, he has played for only 73 minutes. He aims to start tonight lack of form and fitness against one of Europe’s best defense won’t help Espanyol much.
Zidane has one of the biggest squads of La Liga at his disposal, but he’s still missing some players due to injury. Lucas Vazquez, Nacho and Luka Jovic are all in recovery and will miss the game tonight.
Luka Modric and Ferland Mendy have picked up their fifth yellow card of the season. As a result, both of them are suspended.
Real Madrid: Courtois, Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo, Casemiro, Kroos, Isco, Vinicius jr, Asensio, Benzema.
Espanyol: Diego López, Javi López, Bernardo Espinosa, Leandro Cabrera, Dídac Vilá, Óscar Melendo, David López, Marc Roca, Adrián Embarba, Wu Lei, Raúl de Tomás.
Great form and huge depth should be enough for Real Madrid to defeat Espanyol tonight.
Espanyol 0 – 2 Real Madrid