After drawing 0-0 at the Wanda Metropolitano last weekend, Real return to the Santiago Bernabéu against Málaga. Real sit in the same position they did before the Madrid Derby, tied with Atlético for 3rd. Meanwhile, Málaga is currently sitting in 18th with only 7 points all season. Los Blancos should win this match rather easily given Málaga is in a relegation spot currently. Given that Real is also 6 points behind Valencia and 10 behind Barcelona, easier matchups like this must be won for the full 3 points.
Keylor Navas, Gareth Bale, and Mateo Kovacic have all returned to training for Real, but are still doubtful for Saturday’s match. Though he returned to training on Friday, Bale is still injured and will miss another week of action, but seems to be getting closer.
Kovacic will likely not start even if ready, though he may feature off the bench at some point during the match. Navas is also unlikely to start again, but it seems like he will make a full return very soon.
Sergio Ramos, who suffered a broken nose against Atlético, is still a question mark to start. After returning to finish out the first half of the Madrid Derby, he was immediately replaced by Nacho to start the second half. Ramos was sporting the ‘Batman’ mask in training, so he may or may not start.
Marco Asensio is another addition to the injury list after missing his last two training sessions with the squad. He has been ruled out for the match with muscle fatigue for around the next 10 days.
Potential Starting XIs
Casilla, Carvajal, Ramos (?), Varane, Marcelo; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Isco, Benzema, Ronaldo
This weekend’s match should see very little changes to the starting squad, even though they really don’t have to risk all their starters. With Navas still likely out of starting again, Casilla will still fill his place as he has.
The only question mark is Ramos and his broken nose. If he can play with it, he will start. If not, Jesus Vallejo may take his place, since Nacho is suspended after being booked against Atlético.
These are currently, at the time of writing, unofficial, as Real have yet to announce even their full roster for Saturday’s match.
Expect to see Lucas Vasquez, Dani Ceballos, and perhaps even Mateo Kovacic come off the bench. Perhaps Borja Mayoral if Kovacic is not on the roster.
Unlike Real, Málaga have released their roster for the match already. Based off this, their starting XI could look like this:
Roberto, Rosales, González, Hernández, Juankar; Keko, Adrián, Chory, Juanpi; Diego Rolan, Borja Bastón
Málaga will be without Federico Ricca, Zdravko Kuzmanovic, and Miguel Torres.
Málaga is coming off a 3-2 win over Deportivo, so their confidence should be high going into this match. While Real drew in their last Liga matchup, they’re coming off a 6-0 domination over APOEL which should be a boost in confidence after failing to score even one goal against Atlético.
As has been said many times, Real cannot take even a relegation side too lightly. They need to dominate them as much they did over APOEL. Anything less than a win and the questions will come flowing in again. These should be an easy 3 points if Real’s head are in the match, especially being at home.
HOW TO WATCH, STREAM LA LIGA
Time: 16:15 CET, 10:15pm EST, 07:15am Pacific.
Venue: Santiago Bernabeu, Madrid, Spain.
Available Streaming: BeIN Sports (USA), Fubo.TV (EVERY Real Madrid game with a high-quality and legal stream, click here to sign up and benefit from a summer discount for new members and Managing Madrid readers).
Prediction: 3-0 Real Madrid-Málaga