Real Madrid vs Galatasaray: UEFA Champions League - Preview and Prediction
Real Madrid will face Turkish champions Galatasaray once again in the reverse fixture of the UEFA Champions League Group stages as they prepare themselves for a tough test against the Lions at the Santiago Bernabeu tomorrow.
Just about two weeks ago, the Spanish giants clinched a hard fought 1-0 victory at Istanbul. So, this will be a more important match for the Los Blancos and they must do everything to win in order to advance to the knockout phases of the UEFA Champions League.
After enduring a frustrating 0-0 draw at home against Real Betis, the 'Los Vikingos' will look to win this fixture at any cost.
On the other hand, Galatasaray's time in the Turkish Super Lig isn't so prolific as they remain seventh in the league table.
They find themselves at the bottom of Group A in the UCL and have won just a single point after playing three matches. After a 2-0 victory against Rizespor last weekend, the Turks have some vital inspiration to limp off the home team from winning this exciting fixture.
Injuries and Suspensions
Real Madrid are still embroiled in an injury crisis as Nacho and Marco Asensio remain out of action for a long term whereas Gareth Bale is still sidelined although it seems that he will make an imminent return to the starting eleven.
Radamel Falcao, Emre Akbaba and Sener Ozbayrakli will be the absentees in the away team. As of now, there are no players suspended in both teams.
Potential starting eleven
Real Madrid (Formation: 4-3-3): Courtois; Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Rodrygo, Hazard, Benzema
Being a UEFA Champions league match, Brazilian left-back Marcelo should get the nod from Zidane to start ahead of Ferland Mendy.
Rodrygo seems to have impressed the coach with his incredible talent down the right wing and he will surely get a place instead of Lucas Vazquez.
The rest are the same players who faced Real Betis around last week at home. But the significant rise in form for most of the Real Madrid players in the recent matches will make an impact in this fixture too.
Galatasaray (Formation: 4-2-3-1) : Muslera; Mariano, Luyindama, Marcao, Nagatomo; N’Zonzi, Lemina, Belhanda, Feghouli; Babel, Andone
Galatasaray will look to rely on a counter-attacking formation to absorb Real Madrid's strong attack and the absence of Falcao is the only negative that can be seen in the squad.
Wingers Sofiane Feghouli and Ryan Babel will test the Real Madrid defence with their pace and their capability to outrun opposition defenders. Florin Andone, the Romanian striker on loan from Brighton and Hove Albion will add the much needed firepower for the team.
Prediction: Real Madrid 3 - 1 Galatasaray
Cover Image Credits: Evening Standard