Real Madrid have already decided starting line-up for Manchester City clash


Carlo Ancelotti, Head Coach of Real Madrid, reacts during the LaLiga EA Sports match between RCD Mallorca and Real Madrid CF at Estadi de Son Moix on April 13, 2024 in Mallorca, Spain. 

Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti has already decided on his playing XI that would take the field against Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League quarter-final second-leg tie.

The journalist mentions that the Italian will revert to his usual 4-3-1-2 setup and the only change will be the inclusion of Nacho, who will replace the suspended Aurelien Tchouameni. 

The rest of the defence will consist of Ferland Mendy, Antonio Rudiger and Dani Carvajal. The midfield, on the other hand, will feature Toni Kroos, Eduardo Camaving and Federico Valverde.

Starboy Jude Bellingham will return to his advanced role after having played in a deeper position in the first leg while the likes of Vinicius Jr. and Rodrygo will continue to lead the charge.

A game with a lot at stakes

Real Madrid continues to rely on their rich history to secure a crucial victory against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday.

Historically, the Los Blancos have struggled on this ground, failing to secure a win in their past five visits. 

Real Madrid’s playing XI vs Manchester City.

Their record includes two draws and three losses, the most recent defeat being in the semi-finals of the previous edition, where they suffered a resounding 4-0 loss after a 1-1 draw in the first leg.

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On the other hand, Real Madrid are not supported by the fact that Pep Guardiola’s side has turned the Etihad into a formidable stronghold, with their last Champions League defeat at the venue dating back to September 2018, when they were defeated by Lyon during the group stage.

Pep is Madrid’s nightmare

Ever since Guardiola joined Manchester City, he has faced off against Real Madrid a total of seven times and this Wednesday marks the eighth encounter between them. 

So far, the tally stands at four wins for Guardiola’s side, two draws, and just one defeat. Across these matches, they have netted 17 goals while conceding 12.

In those head-to-head battles, Guardiola’s team managed to knock out Real Madrid twice: once in the round of 16 during the 2019/20 season, and again in the semifinals of the 2022/23 season. 

However, in the semifinals of the 2021/22 season, it was Real Madrid who emerged victorious. Now, as they face each other again this Wednesday, the outcome of this fourth-round clash is eagerly awaited.

French President Emmanuel Macron expressed his desire for Kylian Mbappe to participate in the Olympic Games, while also dropping a subtle hint toward Real Madrid. 

He indicated his confidence that Real Madrid would ultimately agree to release their players for the tournament.

“We are going to do everything possible to have a competitive team at the Olympic Games. I have confidence in the French and European clubs,” he told RMC Sport as relayed by AS.

“I think the clubs have to play their part if we want to have a great show. That is one of my fears,” he added.

Upon being asked if he was referring to the president of Real Madrid, Florentino Perez, he said, “Exactly, that’s what I meant.”

Macron also emphasized the importance of the Olympic Games, stating that France aims to secure a record number of medals. 

Regarding football, there is uncertainty surrounding the participation of players like Mbappe and privately, the President is urging the Federation to make every effort to form the strongest team possible.

“I have not yet spoken to him about that, but I hope that his club in particular allows it. And the other clubs too,” he revealed.

Thierry Henry wants him too

It is to be noted that Thierry Henry has stepped up to lead the French Olympic Football Team and he recently made a public plea for Mbappe to join their ranks for the upcoming competition.

“We know that Real Madrid is an institution. You have to stay in your place, send an email to find out if you can have an appointment according to the rules of the art,” he had said in March.

“We will try to ask for an appointment with Real Madrid. We can’t stop at a ‘no’. But if the ‘no’ remains a ‘no’, I don’t have the cards in hand to do something,” he added.

As of today, anything related to Mbappe joining the Olympic squad is uncertain and only the upcoming weeks will determine the fate of this event.

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