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Real Madrid team news, possible starting line-up against Valencia

Real Madrid take on Valencia at Mestalla on matchday five of the 2021/22 LaLiga season on Sunday (9pm CEST; 3pm EDT).

Real Madrid's Italian coach Carlo Ancelotti is pictured before the Spanish League football match between Real Madrid CF and RC Celta de Vigo at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on September 12, 2021. (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS / AFP)

Real Madrid head coach Carlo Ancelotti takes an almost unchanged squad to Mestalla as Los Blancos kick off the season’s first packed period of fixtures by facing off against Valencia in LaLiga (9pm CEST; 3pm EDT).

Díaz drops out of Real Madrid squad for Valencia trip

The only change to the group that travelled to Italy for Wednesday’s Champions League win over Inter Milan is the absence of Mariano Díaz. The Dominican international striker was unable to train with the group on Saturday due to a groin problem.

Madrid have four games in ten days - Sunday’s clash at Mestalla, followed by three straight matches at the Bernabéu: against Real Mallorca (Wednesday 22nd) and Villarreal (Saturday 25th) in LaLiga, and against FC Sheriff in Europe (Tuesday 28th).

Ancelotti not expected to ring changes at Mestalla

Speaking on Saturday, Ancelotti said he anticipates “a demanding game, because Valencia are playing well, they’re on a good run of form and they’re full of confidence”. The Italian is expected to make few changes to his line-up.

The defence is likely to be the same as at the San Siro, with Éder Militao and David Alaba at centre-back, and Dani Carvajal and Nacho Fernández at right and left-back, respectively.

In midfield, one selection doubt is whether Luka Modric will play. Ancelotti had suggested the Croat could be rested against Inter, but finally fielded him in his starting line-up. Modric could make way for Eduardo Camavinga against Valencia, though, after the Frenchman impressed with a goal and an assist in his first two appearances for Madrid, both as a substitute.

In attack, Karim Benzema and Vinícius Júnior are expected to start, with either Eden Hazard or Rodrygo Goes likely to fill the final berth in the forward line.

Valencia vs Real Madrid: possible starting line-up

Real Madrid’s potential XI against Valencia: Courtois; Carvajal, Militao, Alaba, Nacho; Valverde, Casemiro, Modric/Camavinga; Hazard/Rodrygo, Benzema and Vinicius.

On the bench, Ancelotti is set to have: Lunin, Fuidias, Vallejo, Gutiérrez, Blanco, Isco, Modric/Camavinga, Asensio, Vázquez, Hazard/Rodrygo and Jovic.

In addition to Díaz, Real Madrid also have Marcelo, Ferland Mendy, Toni Kroos, Dani Ceballos and Gareth Bale unavailable due to injury.


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