Real Madrid: Bale and James make Copa squad for Salamanca
Los Blancos manager Zinedine Zidane has taken a strong squad for the new cup challenge but is expected to rotate the first eleven.
Real Madrid have announced their squad for the Copa del Rey match against Unionistas. The game takes place on Wednesday with a kick-off at 21:00 local time in Las Pistas del Helmántico. As expected, Zinedine Zidane has left several of his normal first team players at home, and is likely to rotate much of the side to give more fringe players some pitch time.
Bale ready for Copa return
Captain Sergio Ramos has not yet fully recovered from his sprained ankle, and is one of the stars to remain in the capital. After recovering from injury, Karim Benzema played a few minutes against Sevilla at the weekend and has been taken for this game with a view of him getting a little more sharpness with some huge games just around the corner. As per Zidane's comments at Tuesday's press conference, both James Rodríguez and Gareth Bale are back from their own troubles and could be part of the starting eleven. Toni Kroos, Luka Modric and Rodrygo all stay back to rest.
Although this game could have been a chance for the French coach to try out some of the kids, he has shown the depth of Los Blancos' squad, and an element of the seriousness given the new format of the cup, by not taking a single youth player to Salamanca. Odriozola is another that doesn't travel as he prepares for his imminent departure to Bayern Munich.
Real Madrid squad for Copa del Rey
Goalkeepers: Courtois, Areola, Altube
Defenders: Carvajal, Militão, Varane, Nacho, Marcelo, Mendy
Midfielders: Casemiro, Valverde, James, Isco
Forwards: Benzema, Bale, Lucas V., Jović, Brahim, Vinicius Jr
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