Rudiger is set to once again confront Haaland, having effectively marked him in their previous encounter. Carlo Ancelotti confirmed Rudiger’s place in the lineup, raising the question of who will make way for the defender.
The logical choice appears to be dropping Rodrygo, despite his current good form. Rodrygo could still contribute as a valuable substitute, allowing for a formidable midfield combination of Modric, Kroos, Camavinga, and Valverde, who can also contribute in the forward position if needed.
Militao’s recent decline in performance has been noticeable, with the Brazilian making a significant mistake in each game over the past month. These errors have directly led to goals against Girona and Real Sociedad, as well as causing tense moments against Osasuna and Getafe.
Ancelotti has shown a preference for the center-back pairing of Militao and Alaba, which proved successful in last season’s LaLiga-Champions League double. However, if the aim is to counter the strength and speed of Haaland, it is possible that Alaba may be the weakest link among the three center-backs.
Assuming Camavinga’s knee is healthy, it is highly unlikely to consider a scenario where he would be benched. He has been a standout player for Real Madrid this season, showcasing his strength, energy, and ability to penetrate defensive lines. Despite his young age, Camavinga’s contributions have overshadowed any mistakes he might have made. Similar to Modric and Kroos, it would be unlikely for him to be dropped from the starting lineup. Whether playing at left-back or in midfield, Camavinga is a reliable and promising choice for a starting role, especially alongside Alaba at full-back.
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