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Should Isco start for Real Madrid in Champions League Final against Liverpool?

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Villarreal v Real Madrid - La Liga Photo by Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images

Real Madrid face Liverpool in a pivotal Champions League Final this Saturday. Los Blancos have an interesting conundrum for their offensive line. We’ve covered both Bale and Benzema’s options to feature in the starting lineup, but should Isco start behind the two strikers?

Pros

  • Kroos and Modric will need help when Real have the ball. Jurgen Klop and his player will not let these two midfielders play and control the game. In fact, you should expect to see some very intense pressing on both men, so Isco’s presence would be very helpful so that Los Blancos can control the ball.
  • Madrid need to create quality chances. Los Blancos often rely too much on crosses and Liverpool will defend those easily through Van Dijk and Lovren. With Isco on the field, Zidane’s men will have the ability to be dangerous through the middle as well.
  • His performance against Juventus last season did not disappoint. Isco got to the 2017 Champions League Final in a similar situation when he was competing with Bale for a spot in the lineup. He ended up completing a very solid performance, proving he can also work hard and defend in the midfield. Zidane can trust him.

Cons

  • It’s tough for him to play more than 60 minutes in these games. Real Madrid will need Isco to work relentlessly and the Spanish midfielder has proved time and time again that he gets tired after 60 or 70 minutes.
  • Isco would be great off the bench. If Zidane inserts Isco during the second half when Liverpool are tired, Real Madrid will dominate the ball throughout the last third of the match. It would be almost impossible for the British side to recover the ball.
  • Asensio? Vazquez? Everybody’s assuming that these two players have no chance to start, but Zidane might also decide to include them both in the lineup with a 4-4-2 that has been fairly effective this season. If that’s the case, Isco will get dropped.

HOW TO WATCH, STREAM CHAMPIONS LEAGUE FINAL

Date: 05/26/2018

Time: 21:45 local, 20:45 GMT+2 (Spain), 02:45pm EST, 11:45am Pacific.

Venue: Olimpiyskiy Kiev, Kiev, Ukraine.

Available TV: FOX (USA), BT Sport 2 (UK), Antena 3 (Spain).

Available Streaming: FOX Match Pass (USA), Fubo.TV (EVERY Real Madrid game with a high-quality and legal stream, click here to sign up and benefit from a spring discount for new members and Managing Madrid readers).