Real Madrid’s starting XI against Eintracht Frankfurt
Ancelotti declared that the Super Cup is a continuation of last year and the team that started the final in Paris will line up in Helsinki.
Carlo Ancelotti hasn’t entirely ruled out the possibility of his Real Madrid side winning the Sextuple. “I don’t know if we’ll do it, because it’s very complicated, but the squad is very good and I have enormous faith in it,” he told reporters in Tuesday’s press conference in Helsinki. The Madrid coach has all of his players available which gives his multiple options for his starting Xi. However, it seems clear that the team which will take to the pitch tomorrow night will be similar, if not identical to the one which beat Liverpool in Paris in May. “You have to take into account those who won the Champions League... It’s really a continuation of last season, we really want to close it with this title,” Ancelotti explained.
The Italian gave a few clues about his line-up in the friendly against Juventus, the last game of the pre-season. That game served as a dress rehearsal for the Super Cup on Wednesday: Courtois; Carvajal, Militão, Alaba, Mendy; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Valverde, Benzema and Vinicius. That was the team that started the Champions League final in Saint-Dennis, against Juve at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena and most likely to start against Eintracht Frankfurt at the Olympic Stadium in Helsinki.
With summers arrivals Rüdiger and Tchouameni plus Rodrygo’s return to form, there were suggestions of changes to the team. But Carletto provided tailored answers as July progressed. The German centre-back was in line to shift Alaba over to left back and Mendy to the bench, but after the Las Vegas Clásico it became clear that Ancelotti was not in the business of uncoupling Militão and Alaba. In fact, although the former Chelsea man made his debut as a No.3, “It’s clear that Mendy is the first-choice”. While Tchouameni, signed as heir to Casemiro, he will still will have to continue working hard if he is to take the Brazilian’s place and, a priori, he will also have to wait on the bench for his opportunity to make his official debut.
In attack, Benzema and Vinicius are non-negotiable, while Valverde’s versatility has earned him a place in Ancelotti’s order of preference for the big nights. His stamina and ability to support on the wing, in the middle and in attack makes Fede the favourite to occupy the right wing against Eintracht. Rodrygo is the main alternative and his challenge to win back his place begins on Wednesday.
Possible Eintracht line-up
Up against Madrid will be a Frankfurt side that goes into the match have already started official competition, although with two setbacks. They were resoundingly thrashed 1-6 in their opening Bundesliga match against Bayern - and they will be without their star player, Filip Kostic is one step away from signing for Juve and has not entered the list. The team which Oliver Glasner is expected to start with reads: Trapp; Toure, Tuta, Ndicka; Knauff, Sow, Rode, Lenz; Götze, Lucas Borré; and Kolo Muani.