After a very hard-fought victory over Sevilla during the weekend which put Real Madrid four points clear at the top of the table, they prepare to take on Athletic Bilbao three days later in a match that was initially supposed to be on Matchday 9 but has been rescheduled to this Wednesday due to the decision to extend the Conmebol international break in October. A victory here will give them a massive boost but it’s also one where we’ll almost definitely see some changes to the lineup with some of the core players in desperate need of rest
Let’s take a look at who could be part of Ancelotti’s starting eleven on Wednesday night.
GK Thibaut Courtois
Thibaut Courtois has consistently come up big for Real Madrid. The Belgian goalkeeper is one of the main reasons why the club is doing as well as it is and at the moment, it’s impossible to even think of having him on the bench regardless of the opposition. He will be tested as usual and once again, he will be making at least one jaw-dropping save like he does in practically every game so far.
RB Lucas Vazquez
The first player that should be rested on the night is Dani Carvajal. He had a very poor night against Sevilla and even though it was a one-off bad night for the Spaniard, there is no harm in giving an injury-prone player rest whenever you can, especially if he’s the best right-back you have.
It would be great to see Carvajal come out every matchday but that is impossible, and he’ll need to be taken care of correctly so that he’s fit and ready for the bigger matches, such as the one against Real Sociedad this weekend. Lucas Vazquez has always been able to do his part when called upon. Even though he’s not as effective as Carvajal in defense, he should be able to do what’s required on Wednesday.
CB Eder Militao
Eder Militao has so much potential and we saw it on Sunday night as he carries a bag of tricks that we have not witnessed yet. He’s young and he has shown tremendous maturity over the course of this season so far. He will be called upon once again as consistency would do him a world of good and with his usual center-back partner expected to get some rest, he’ll have to show that he can continue his great form.
CB Nacho Fernandez
David Alaba recovered from a minor knee injury and looked completely fit against Sevilla but maybe giving him some time off would help him avoid any unexpected issues. Nacho Fernandez has built a career at the club as being someone who can come in from the bench and do the job to perfection, we have already seen that a few times this season. Let’s hope we see it once again against the Basque club.
LB Ferland Mendy
After what was probably his best performance of the season, Ferland Mendy will be starting again. He’s shown that he’s the best left-back in the team by miles and if things go well in the game, he can be taken off for some rest. Until then though, starting the game with his backup, which is Marcelo could, unfortunately, have a negative effect on the defending.