LALIGA

Valladolid vs Real Madrid: preview, team news, confirmed line-ups

Real Madrid will look to extend their beaten run to 12 LaLiga games as they travel to face Valladolid at the Estadio José Zorilla on Sunday.

Valladolid vs Real Madrid: preview, team news, predicted line-ups
EDUARDO CANDEL REVIEJO DIARIO AS

Real Madrid travel to Valladolid on Sunday (kick-off, 21:00 CET) knowing a win will position them as outright leaders in what is shaping up to be a two-horse battle for the LaLiga title.

With Barcelona slipping up on Saturday against Valencia (2-0), Zinedine Zidane’s side have a chance go three points clear of their rivals for the first time this season. And their hopes of victory at the Estadio José Zorrilla will be boosted by the return of captain Sergio Ramos after a short injury layoff.

Having now gone five games without finding the net, Madrid’s leading goal-scorer, Karim Benzema, will be eager to add to his 12-goal LaLiga tally, as his battle with Lionel Messi (14 goals) for the Pichichi is also shaping to be a season-long affair. But during Benzema’s drought, Zidane’s men have had no issues finding goals from other sources, most recently through Casemiro, who scored a brace in the 2-1 win over Sevilla last weekend to extend Los Blancos unbeaten league run to 11 games (7 wins, 4 draws).

Benzema in action against Unionistas.

Zidane will undoubtedly be expecting his side to ensure that streak continues at the Zorilla, where they ran out 4-1 victors the last time out in March, 2019. That emphatic win, however, was not enough to save the job of former coach Santiago Solari, who was sacked and replaced by Zidane the next day. And after a shaky close to last season, the French coach has overseen one of Madrid’s best league runs in recent years, with just one defeat from 20 games played.

Coming into the game after a shock defeat to Tenerife in the Copa del Rey, Valladolid – now owned by former Madrid Gálactico, Ronaldo Nazario – would love nothing more than to inflict Los Blancos’ second defeat of the season.

Currently sitting in 16th place, La Pucela have won just four LaLiga games this term, drawing 10 and losing six. Though, they do have a decent record at home, with just one defeat from nine. It must be noted, however, that Valladolid are winless in their last 10 LaLiga meetings with Madrid, with their last victory coming in 2008 under José Luis Mendilíbar (1-0).

Valladolid confirmed XI vs Real Madrid

Starting XI: Masip, Carnero, Salisu, Olivas, San Emeterio, Joaquín, Plano, Alcaraz, Michel,  Guardiola, Unal

Subs: Samu, Nacho, Antoñito, Toni, Miguel, Hervías, Moyano

Real Madrid confirmed XI vs Valladolid  

Starting XI: Courtois, Nacho, Varane, Ramos, Mendy. Modric, Isco, Casemiro, Kroos, Rodrygo, Benzema

Subs: Areola, Marcelo, Militao, Valverde, James, Lucas V., Jovic

Valladolid vs Real Madrid: Injuries and suspensions

Gareth Bale, who played and scored mid-week against Unionistas in La Copa de Rey, misses out due to a slight ankle issue, with the Welshman due back to training on Monday. Zidane will also be without the long-term injured pair of Marco Asensio and Eden Hazard, who finally started back on ball work last week and is due to return next month. Dani Carvajal is unavailable through suspension after picking up a fifth yellow card last week, with Nacho filling in at right back now that Álvaro Odriozola has left for Bayern Munich on loan.

The hosts, meanwhile, had no inured or suspended players going into the game. However, Valladolid announced just hours before the tie that Sandro has been pulled out of the squad due to "general discomfort". 

Dani Carvajal is suspended for the clash with Villarreal after he picked up a fifth yellow card last weekend against Sevilla.

Valladolid vs Real Madrid: What the managers said

Sergio (Valladolid): “It is fortunate that Real Madrid is the next game after such a disappointment [in the Copa del Rey] … Motivation is constant and people want to forget the other day as soon as possible. It is a game that has all possible incentives against a very powerful opponent … Hopefully we can be at their level and compete well.”

Zinedine Zidane (Real Madrid): “We are in a good moment and we want to continue with what we are doing, nothing more. We know it is difficult, every three days there is a game; that is another story. We always have to show the best version of ourselves. Tomorrow will be the same, a very complicated game against an opponent who has lost only one game at home. We will see what we give in the field.”

Zidane speaks to the media ahead of Real Madrid's trip to Valladolid.

Valladolid vs Real Madrid: head-to-head (last five games)

Real Madrid 1-1 Valladolid (24-8-2019, LaLiga)
Valladolid 1-4 Real Madrid (10-3-2019, LaLiga)
Real Madrid 2-0 Valladolid (3-11-2018, LaLiga)
Valladolid 1-1 Real Madrid (7-5-2014, LaLiga)
Real Madrid 4-0 Valladolid (30-11-2013, LaLiga)