Nobody expected Barcelona to draw 2-2 against Deportivo at the Camp Nou and that is precisely why Real Madrid must take advantage of that result and earn a win in Villarreal, one victory that could put Los Blancos just two points behind Barcelona in the table.
Needless to say, it will not be easy to beat Villarreal. The Yellow Submarine play with a lot of intensity and Real will need to be at their best and ready to defend everything thrown at them. Players like Keylor Navas, Sergio Ramos and Gareth Bale are back for Madrid and that is good news for Benítez, who will be able to have a good, deep bench at his disposal if things go south.
It seems that Kroos and Modric will start in the midfield. They did not play against Malmö, so their legs should be fresh to work hard against Villarreal's intensity. All in all, a crucial match for Madrid's title run.
Time: 20:30 CET, 14:30 EST.
Venue: El Madrigal, Villarreal, España.
Projected Real Madrid XI: Navas, Danilo, Pepe, Ramos, Marcelo, Kroos, Modric, James, Bale, Ronaldo, Benzema.
TV Information: BeIN Sports USA, Sky Sports 1 (UK), Others.
Stream Information: Others.