Real Madrid are back to Santiago Bernabéu this Saturday (15:00, UK time) to face Osasuna, a newly promoted team who have only picked one point in the first two games in La Liga. Zinedine Zidane will have to introduce some changes after the international fixtures early this week. Los Blancos look to earn another three points and become top of the table winning all three games played.
Osasuna shouldn’t be a difficult rival. This newly promoted team hasn’t signed many players this summer. So far, the drew at Málaga in the very last minute and lost at home (0-2) against Real Sociedad. Osasuna played at Bernabéu for the last time in April 2014 and they were thrashed 4-0, with Cristiano Ronaldo scoring two wonderful goals. Actually, the Northern team has not picked up a point at Santiago Bernabéu since 2005, when the drew (1-1).
The good news for Real Madrid is that the BBC is back. Cristiano Ronaldo is set to return after winning the Euro. The final against France was his last game and now he’s fully recovered, at least to play one hour. Zidane has confirmed in press conference that Karim Benzema is also set to play, although the manager hasn’t said if the French will start the game. Gareth Bale, who scored two goals with Wales, will play from the beginning.
Zidane didn’t want to say the lineup for the game, but he confirmed that James Rodríguez, Casemiro and Marcelo won’t play. They are out of the list for the game because they arrived later this week after playing in South America with Colombia and Brazil. All three will rest and we can’t see again James Rodríguez in the lineup. Isco, Keylor Navas and Coentrao are also injured and will miss the game.
Danilo and Kovacic could start the game and replace Marcelo and Casemiro. Marco Asensio, who has started all the games, could go back to the bench if the BBC finally play against Osasuna. The three points are the main goal to start the Champions League with optimism. On Wednesday, Real Madrid will face Sporting Lisbon and Zidane needs to think about rotating the players so they don’t get tired.
Real Madrid possible starting XI: Casillas; Nacho, Ramos, Pepe, Danilo; Kroos, Kovacic, Modric; Ronaldo, Bale and Morata.
Osasuna possible starting XI: Nauzet; Clerc, David García, Flaño, Unai García, Buñuel; Fausto, De las Cuevas, Oier, Rivière and Oriol Riera.