Real Madrid travel to Osasuna on Saturday hoping to reduce the gap to Barcelona at the top of the table to just five points. Yet with Liverpool on the horizon this Tuesday, if the players do not, then the staff will have the repeat of last season’s Champions League final at the back of their mind.
With it comes several selection dilemmas. Carlo Ancelotti’s tried and tested in big games generally includes a midfield of Toni Kroos, Luka Modric and now Aurelien Tchouameni, with Fede Valverde on the right side. The Italian will have to decide whether to stick with the more solid Valverde, or introduce Rodrygo Goes from the start.
Even the midfield three are not safe though. Dani Ceballos has arguably been their best midfielder in 2023, with Eduardo Camavinga potentially second behind him. With Carlo Ancelotti admitting that Aurelien Tchouameni is not quite at peak fitness after the World Cup and an injury, Diario AS speculate whether he might be dropped for the Liverpool match. His form has not been what it was before the break either.
Meanwhile Camavinga has come on leaps and bounds. At the start of the season, Camavinga was not trusted to start matches due to his chaotic nature, and poor decision-making. In recent months, he has become much more measured, picking his moments and keeping the space behind him in mind. The Madrid daily say it is possible that Camavinga replaces his compatriot at the base of midfield.
While Camavinga and Ceballos do have a good case to start against Liverpool, Ancelotti has generally stuck with the old guard for the biggest matches. If he were to drop any of Valverde, Tchouameni, Kroos or Modric, it could signal a changing of the guard at the Santiago Bernabeu.
U r the best of the best carlo