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Real Madrid—Athletic Bilbao LaLiga 2021-22 Match Preview, Injuries/Suspensions, Potential XIs, Prediction

Real Madrid returns for midweek action at home

Athletic Club v Real Madrid - La Liga Santander Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Match Preview

Real Madrid return midweek for home action against Athletic Club on Wednesday. This is the second of two top 10 opponents Real will face in a tough stretch of matches this week.

Los Blancos are coming off a big home win against Sevilla over the weekend. The victory pushes their first place lead to four points ahead of second place Atletico Madrid and drops Sevilla to fourth in the league table.

Athletic are also having a strong season so far where they sit eighth in the standings, just three points trailing Barcelona and four points outside of a top six spot. However, they haven’t registered a win in their last five where they’ve lost once and drawn four times in that stretch.

Real are unbeaten in their last 12 matches against Athletic. A win on Wednesday will be their best against Bilbao all-time.

Injuries/Suspensions

Real Madrid remain without both Gareth Bale and Dani Ceballos. Eden Hazard and Rodrygo both return to the squad after recovering from stomach issues.

Athletic Club will be without Yuri Berchiche, Dani Vivian, Asier Villalibre and Peru Nolaskoain due to injuries. Inigo Martinez is suspended Wednesday after picking up a red card in Athletic’s last match against Granada.

Potential XIs

Real Madrid

Courtois; Carvajal, Militão, Alaba, Mendy; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Rodrygo, Vinicius, Benzema

Real’s lineup will likely look similar to the one Carlo Ancelotti went with against Sevilla on Sunday. With Rodrygo back in the squad he could likely take the starting spot back Wednesday from Marco Asensio.

Hazard will likely start from the bench with how strong Vinicius continues to play this season.

Athletic Club

Simón; Lekue, Yeray, Nunez, Balenziaga; Berenguer, Dani Garcia, Vencedor, Muniain; Raul Garcia, Iñaki Williams

Prediction

Real Madrid—Athletic Bilbao 1-0

Los Blancos will have a tougher match here as Bilbao do know how to force results, which is key to how they have secured themselves a spot among the top 10 clubs in La Liga this season.

Among the top 10 teams, however, Bilbao have scored the least amount of goals (13) while also allowing the least amount of goals (10). Its clear how they have put up so many draws within their last several stretch of matches.

They will give Real Madrid a tough time, but Real should still be able to get a victory given the available squad and how Athletic have been playing of recent. Real will look forward to having another tough match this week against Real Sociedad on Saturday.