Monday, 15 April 2019

Leganes vs Real Madrid: squad news & preview

Real Madrid will travel to face Leganes on Monday evening in a La Liga clash as Zinedine Zidane's side looks to contend with city rivals Atletico Madrid for the number two spot.

It will be a moot league game as Leganes have almost certainly secured their survival in La Liga for next season, while Real Madrid can only contend for a Champions League spot after looking likely to lose the Spanish league title to Barcelona.

The likes of Isco, Gareth Bale and Marcelo will be eager to prove their worth as they look to fight for a spot in Zidane's teams for next year.

Squads & Team News
PositionLeganes squad
GoalkeepersNavas, Luca, Moha, Courtois
DefendersVallejo, Ramos, Varane, Odriozoloa, Reguilon, Nacho, Carvajal
MidfieldersKroos, Modric, Casemiro, Asensio, Isco, Ceballos, Llorente
ForwardsMariano, Benzema, Bale, Vazquez

Oscar Rodriguez as is ineligible to play against his parent club, so Javier Eraso could be slotted in in his absence.

Kenneth Omeruo has picked up a knock, while Guido Carrillo has returned from suspension though Youssef En-Nesyri is still an injury doubt.

Potential Leganes starting XI: Cuellar; Tarin, Siovas, Bustinza; Nyom, Perez, Vesga, Silva; Eraso; Braithwaite, Carrillo.
PositionReal Madrid squad
GoalkeepersNavas, Luca, Moha, Courtois
DefendersVallejo, Ramos, Varane, Odriozola, Reguilon, Nacho, Carvajal, Marcelo
MidfieldersKroos, Modric, Casemiro, Asensio, Isco, Ceballos, Llorente
ForwardsMariano, Benzema, Bale, Vazquez

Vinicius Junior and Thibaut Courtois are both still absent for the game.

Sergio Ramos is injured, which could mean Nacho filling in for him in defence.

Potential Real Madrid starting XI: Navas; Odriozola, Varane, Nacho, Marcelo; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Bale, Benzema, Asensio.

Match Preview

Real Madrid have enjoyed a return to form following Zidane's return as manager after they were eliminated from the Champions League round of 16 at the hands of dark horses Ajax.

Los Blancos have won four of their last five La Liga fixtures – losing 2-1 to Valencia just once in early April – though will finish the season trophy-less following disappointing form in Europe, the Copa del Rey and La Liga.
Dani Carvajal, who is back with the team after picking up an injury during the defeat to Ajax, has described his own season as "a fail" – going on to say that all of his Real Madrid team-mates have fallen well short of their high standards.

"I'd give myself a four, a fail. I go with what the group is, and we've not done things well," he told Marca.

"It's football, but we haven't given the best we could give. For what reason, I couldn't tell you. But none of us have been at our best.

"We've been together for many years and we know each other. That has been the key, but this year we haven't fought for anything."

The 27-year-old also referenced the loss of star striker Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus as a key factor of his side's struggles this campaign:

"It's clear that when a player hits 50 goals you have to try to find them from somewhere else," he explained.

"There have been times when we scored many goals but also conceded. We had anxiety and it cost us points."

Karim Benzema has emerged as the club's leading goal-scorer this season with 17 goals scored in La Liga, but his return falls short of the legacy of the Portugalinternational.

With Real Madrid not contending for any trophies this season, Zidane's attention could turn to the transfer market as they look to fill the void of a CR7-shaped hole.

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