For the fourth time this season, it’s El Clasico. At 9pm local time, we will be facing our eternal rivals, Real Madrid. Live from the Spotify Camp Nou. It’s yet another vitally important game for us in La Liga and it is the final time we’ll be facing Real Madrid in the league this season. Both teams come into the game with slight injury concerns.
Mainly speaking on our side, Pedri wont be available for the game. Despite being under the impression all week that he would be heavily involved. He unfortunately suffered a slight setback in training, earlier this week.
Tonight is our last game before the international break, so grabbing a positive result is vital going into the 2 week break. And that’s exactly what we’re going to be hoping to do later on tonight. One thing’s for sure, were going to have to fight.
Like before, because we have faced Real so many times already this season. We pretty much know what to expect from them. Starting off on the front foot is the most important thing to do tonight.
We have to take the game to them. They’re away from home and will come out trying to attack. We just have to make sure we are sharp. The most important thing is to take advantage of the chances we create.
Over recent weeks, without Pedri, we have struggled with creativity, so chances may be few. Making the most of them is exactly what we have to do. Of course, over the last couple of weeks, the buildup to this vitally important game has been clouded by the disgraceful campaign against our club.
Real Madrid have got themselves involved with the campaign too. Which is why the traditional lunch between clubs ahead of the game, was cancelled. Tensions are high and its even expected that Madrid president, Perez, won’t be attending the game. Due to the ongoing tensions. We have to use this fire made within us to take the game to Real Madrid. To stand up for ourselves where it really matters.
The lineup pretty much picks itself nowadays. And when you consider we wont be with Pedri or Dembele, it makes the lineup even more easy to pick. One positive about being out of Europe, is that we have more rest days during the week. Which, when it comes to the lineup, should mean that we are able to pick our full strength team. Every week. There may be games where we’ll need to rotate. But hopefully for the most part, we should be able to go strong.
As always, the question is will we stick to the four man midfield, and play Kessie in place of Pedri. Or will we go back to how we started against Bilbao last weekend. With a three man midfield and Ansu or Ferran on the left hand side. Personally, I think we will start with the four man midfield and as always, when El Clasico comes to town, that means Ronald Araujo will be playing at right back.
Balde and Christensen are both expected to start alongside Kounde. With Lewandowski starting in his third El Clasico of the season. After missing out in the Copa game with an injury. Having him back is a huge boost for the attack. And will hopefully give a much needed focal point for players like Raphinha to pick out.
My starting lineup:
Araujo- Kounde- Christensen- Balde
Kessie- Busquets- Frenkie- Gavi
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