Chelsea head to the Bernabeu today for a clash with Real Madrid in the Champions League – and the hosts have maintained a strong degree of continuity from their first-leg triumph.
A change to a more conventional 4-4-2 formation paid off handsomely for Carlo Ancelotti and Co at Stamford Bridge last week, with Karim Benzema starring once again in a memorable 3-1 triumph for Los Blancos.
Federico Valverde played on the right side of midfield that night, giving Vinicius Junior a free role around Benzema up top.
While a three-man midfield is usually Madrid’s go-to system, Ancelotti is content to try and repeat his first-leg feat at the Bernabeu with an unchanged line-up.
For the 2-0 weekend win over Getafe in LaLiga, Real gave rest to Dani Carvajal, Ferland Mendy, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos. They all return for this clash at the Bernabeu.
Eden Hazard (ankle), Isco (back) and Luka Jovic (ankle) missed both the first leg and Saturday’s match, and are absent again this evening. Eder Militao is suspended at the back.
On Monday, Madrid confirmed their 23-man matchday squad with Mendy fit to return from a muscle problem and Castilla defender Rafa Marin has also been called up to the bench.
Real Madrid XI (4-4-2): Courtois; Carvajal, Nacho, Alaba, Mendy; Valverde, Kroos, Casemiro, Modric; Vinicius, Benzema.
Subs: Lunin, Fuidias, Marcelo, Vazquez, Mariano, Ceballos, Camavinga, Asensio, Jovic, Bale, Rodrygo, Marin.
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