Predicted XI

Hazard and Ramos back? - How Real Madrid could line up against Elche

Zinedine Zidane will likely be able to call upon the services of two of his returning superstars, but it'll probably be from the bench

10:48am on Friday 12th March 2021
Martin Macdonald

Real Madrid head coach Zinedine Zidane will attempt to give some minutes to Eden Hazard and Sergio Ramos this weekend in the league match against Elche.

Hazard hasn't played since the end of January, while club captain Ramos has missed even more action, with his last game coming against Athletic Bilbao on 14 January.

It is unlikely we'll see both of these players from the start, as Zidane will be keen to avoid any further injury setbacks as we head into the business end of the season, with Los Blancos also facing Atalanta in the Champions League next midweek.

Two likely absentees will be Mariano Diaz and Dani Carvajal, and with the latter missing, that will mean a start at right-back for Lucas Vazquez again.

Nacho, Raphael Varane, and Ferland Mendy will make up the remaining spots in the back four.

Real Madrid didn't have a midweek game to contend with after the hard-fought 1-1 draw against Atletico Madrid last weekend, so the veteran midfield trio of Luka Modric, Toni Kroos, and Casemiro should be fresh enough to start again.

Federico Valverde came on in the 60th minute in the Madrid derby and is pushing as hard as he can to break into that triopoly in midfield, but will probably have to settle for a place on the bench again.

Karim Benzema is a definite starter and scored the vital equalising goal against Atletico last week, and will probably be flanked by Marco Asensio and Vinicius Junior, with the Brazilian replacing his compatriot Rodrygo.

Real Madrid predicted XI against Elche

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