Los Blancos suffered their first defeat in La Liga this season on Monday, losing 3-2 to Rayo Vallecano at the Vallecas. It was the unlikeliest outcome in the recent bunch of league fixtures, with the defeat to Rayo leaving Carlo Ancelotti’s side second on the table—two points adrift of traditional rivals Barcelona at the top after 13 games.
After a poor performance and result, Carlo Ancelotti should seek an immediate response from his boys against Cadiz in what will be Real’s final game before the World Cup break.
Real Madrid Team News
Karim Benzema missed the game at Rayo Vallecano with a small muscle injury but is expected to be back in the squad against Cadiz in midweek. Antonio Rudiger, however, is a doubt after missing Monday’s trip to Rayo from an overloaded hip.
Aurelien Tchouameni returned to the Real Madrid lineup against Rayo after missing the 5-1 win over Celtic in the Champions League last week. In what will be a big boost for Real, Toni Kroos should be available for selection as well after serving a one-game suspension.
Predicted Real Madrid Lineup vs Cadiz (4-3-3)
Thibaut Courtois was tested far too often by Rayo due to a poor defence in front of him. After conceding three goals last time out, he will be desperate to keep a clean sheet at home against Cadiz.
Real Madrid’s defence was completely exposed on Monday, with the players failing to cope with Rayo’s high press. The entire back four of Dani Carvajal, Eder Militao, David Alaba and Ferland Mendy had an off day in the office.
As a result, Ancelotti could make a couple of changes to his defence in midweek. With Rudiger doubtful, Nacho could be handed a start in the Real Madrid lineup on Thursday. The Spaniard will join Eder Militao in central defence, with Alaba moving to left-back.
Carvajal should retain his spot at right-back, nonetheless.
Toni Kroos’ availability is a big boost, and the German should walk straight into the Real Madrid lineup against Cadiz. Kroos will replace Aurelien Tchouameni as the single pivot in midfield, joining Luka Modric and Federico Valverde in the engine room.
The trio of Kroos, Modric and Valverde will be expected to control the game from the onset and dominate Cadiz in the centre of the park.
Marco Asensio was one of the lone bright spots for his side against Rayo, earning a penalty and producing an inch-perfect corner kick to assist Militao’s header. His performance on Monday should earn him another start in the front three alongside Rodrygo Goes and Vinicius Jr. in the Real Madrid lineup.
If the aforementioned attacking trio can click for Los Blancos, Cadiz might endure a long night in the Spanish capital. Karim Benzema should be fit enough to start on the bench.