Rodrygo Goes will return to the starting lineup, but Luka Modric and Casemiro have been ruled out for Real Madrid’s La Liga clash with Osasuna.
Real Madrid will hope to take a step closer to reclaiming the La Liga title when they lock horns with Osasuna at El Sadar on Wednesday night. And Carlo Ancelotti has two new roster issues to deal with ahead of his side’s latest fixture.
Luka Modric misses out as he is struggling with fatigue, while Casemiro picked up a minor injury in training this week. So while the latter should have been available after serving his suspension last weekend against Sevilla, he is sidelined for Real Madrid’s trip to El Sadar to take on Osasuna.
Modric and Casemiro have joined Ferland Mendy (groin), Marcelo (knock), Jesus Vallejo (COVID-19), Luka Jovic (groin) and Mariano Diaz (knock) on the sidelines. With Real Madrid’s travelling squad light on numbers, Carlo Ancelotti might not be able to rotate his troops ahead of the crucial UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg against Manchester City next week.
But the good news is that Real Madrid will not take the field this coming weekend, allowing the players a week-long rest to prepare for the big European test. Meanwhile, Ancelotti gave an update on Modric and Casemiro in his pre-match press conference while confirming that Karim Benzema will be involved.
The Real Madrid boss said, “He’s [Modric] a bit tired and I will rest him. He won’t play in the game. He [Casemiro] had a minor issue in training on Monday, as did (Luka) Jović and Mariano. He won’t make tomorrow’s game, but we’ve got a week of rest ahead of the semi-final and I think all three of them will be fit for the Manchester City game.”
On Benzema, Ancelotti said, “When a player is fine there’s no need for them to rest and it would make no sense not to put him in. The player is fine and in good form and doesn’t have any muscle fatigue. He’ll play tomorrow.”
Modric and Casemiro’s absence means Real Madrid’s midfield trifecta picks itself unless Ancelotti throws a swerve ball and deploys Isco or Dani Ceballos in the middle of the park. But Eduardo Camavinga should reprise the anchor role, with Toni Kroos and Federico Valverde being the box-to-box midfielders.
Benzema will spearhead the Real Madrid attack against Osasuna, as confirmed by Ancelotti. And with Valverde dropping into the midfield, Rodrygo Goes should take up the vacated right-wing berth after making his mark off the bench versus Sevilla. Vinicius Jr. will be the third man in the final third.
Thibaut Courtois picks himself in the Real Madrid goal against Osasuna, and the defensive quartet should remain unchanged in Mendy and Marcelo’s absence, Lucas Vazquez will thus continue as the makeshift right-back, with Dani Carvajal starting as the left-back. Eder Militao and David Alaba will retain their central defensive partnership.
Predicted Real Madrid XI: Courtois; Vazquez, Militao, Alaba, Carvajal; Kroos, Camavinga, Valverde; Rodrygo, Benzema, Vinicius Jr.