Eder Militao has been ruled out, but Luka Modric and Toni Kroos will return when Real Madrid face Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League.
Real Madrid will look to book a place in the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League when they play hosts to reigning champions, Chelsea, in the second leg of their quarter-finals on Tuesday night.
Leading up to the game, manager Carlo Ancelotti has been handed a boost on the injury front as Ferland Mendy is back in the squad after missing the weekend clash against Getafe due to fatigue. Luka Jovic has also recovered from his issue and is available for selection. However, Eden Hazard remains sidelined for Real Madrid, while Jesus Vallejo also misses out due to coronavirus.
Ancelotti made several tweaks for the league game against Getafe with an eye on Tuesday’s encounter. And he is expected to recall his heavy-hitters when Chelsea come visiting. Real Madrid will have to cope without defensive mainstay Eder Militao, who is suspended due to an accumulation of yellow cards.
Militao’s absence will be felt by Real Madrid, although they can call upon the experienced Nacho Fernandez to fill in for the Brazilian. Nacho will partner with David Alaba at the heart of the Merengues’ defence, while Mendy will return at left-back, replacing Marcelo. Dani Carvajal should also come back into the side at right-back, at the expense of Lucas Vazquez, who scored a goal in the weekend clash.
Moving into the middle of the park, Ancelotti is likely to reinstate his star midfield duo of Luka Modric and Toni Kroos in the starting lineup after giving the veteran stars a rest against Getafe. Brazilian enforcer Casemiro will hold on to his spot in the side as the third member of Real Madrid’s midfield unit.
Eduardo Camavinga, as a result, will drop out to the bench against Chelsea. Meanwhile, Federico Valverde, who impressed in the first leg against Chelsea, will again move out to the right flank as he did at Stamford Bridge. So, there will be no place in the starting XI for Rodrygo Goes and Marco Asensio.
As for the remaining two attacking slots, there is no looking past the in-form duo of Karim Benzema and Vinicius Junior, who caused all sorts of problems to the Chelsea defence last week. Praising his star forwards in the pre-match press conference, Ancelotti said, “Two forwards have stood out this season: Vini Jr. and Benzema. Saying that we rely on Benzema is true and we’re very happy to say that.”
Gareth Bale will be an option from the bench, along with Jovic, Rodrygo and Asensio.
Real Madrid Predicted XI: Courtois, Carvajal, Nacho, Alaba, Mendy, Modric, Casemiro, Kroos, Valverde, Benzema, Vinicius.