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Villarreal vs Real Madrid, 2017 La Liga: Predicted lineups, team news and prediction

Can Real Madrid bounce back?

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Real Madrid CF v RCD Espanyol - La Liga Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Real Madrid need a statement win after the discouraging 2-1 loss in Valencia last Wednesday. Although Mestalla was never expected to be an easy venue for Los Blancos, Zidane's men played with no energy to start the game and found themselves two goals behind after just 10 minutes had gone by.

Villarreal will be an even tougher opponent than Valencia, so the players better be ready for what will be a very demanding challenge. Gareth Bale is expected to reappear in Real's starting XI after coming off the bench on the last two games. The Welshman could be an important asset that should allow Madrid to be more dangerous through counterattacks, but he will also need to help the midfielder against Villarreal's quick players.

Varane will miss the game with the hamstring injury he picked up last Wednesday, so Pepe will almost certainly be the one playing alongside Sergio Ramos.

Real Madrid predicted XI: Navas, Carvajal, Pepe, Ramos, Marcelo, Casemiro, Kroos, Modric, Bale, Ronaldo, Benzema.

Villarreal predicted XI: Asenjo, Mario, Musacchio, Ruiz, Costa, Dos Santos, Trigueros, Bruno, Castillejo, Lopez, Bakambu.

Prediction: Villarreal 0-0 Real Madrid

How to watch

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