Carvalho to start for Madrid?

Speculation is that Ricardo Carvalho will be handed a first League start for Real Madrid for eight months this weekend.

The club are enduring a defensive selection headache heading into Sunday afternoon’s visit of Real Sociedad, with both Pepe and Sergio Ramos suspended for accumulating yellow cards, whilst the former is also ruled out for up to a month after undergoing ankle surgery today

Meanwhile, deputy Raul Albiol is also currently sidelined with an injury, meaning that Portuguese centre-back Carvalho, who was available for transfer last summer but failed to find a club, is seen as in prime contention to start in Week 18.

If he does then it will be the first League start for Madrid for the veteran since May 5 last season. Speculation is that he will partner Raphael Varane in the centre.

Michael Essien is believed likely to come in at right-back and Alvaro Arbeloa will cover at left-back, as Fabio Coentrao is still in and out of training due to his recovery from a hamstring injury.

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