Union Berlin vs Real Madrid: Match preview


BERLIN, GERMANY - DECEMBER 12: Luka Modric of Real Madrid warms up during the UEFA Champions League match between 1. FC Union Berlin and Real Madrid CF at Olympiastadion on December 12, 2023 in Berlin, Germany.

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Real Madrid’s five-match winning streak was put to a halt in the 1-1 draw against Real Betis over the weekend. However, the Merengues return to action in the UEFA Champions League where they have five wins on the trot and would be looking to end the group stages with another win.

Match details

Date: Tuesday, 12th December 2023
Competition: UEFA Champions League
Matchday: 6
Time: 22:00 CEST
Venue: Stadion An der Alten Försterei

Match preview

Real Madrid will step on the field against Union Berlin following a 1-1 draw against Real Betis at the Benito Villiamarín. The draw saw Los Blancos drop down to the 2nd position in the league with 39 points and Girona leaped to the 1st position with 41 points following their victory against FC Barcelona.

But now, they are in Champions League action, a competition that they are fairly familiar with. They have won all their games with ease, with the exception of the last game against Napoli which was a close one, but still Real Madrid emerged victorious.

The Merengues have all but secured the top spot and also a place in the Round of 16. On the other hand, Union Berlin would look to cause an upset as a win for them can see them qualify for the UEFA Europa League – in the event that Napoli also wins against Braga.

The German side has been in poor form this season in contrast to last season. They languish at 15th place in the Bundesliga and do not have a win in the Champions League. Despite playing at home, it would be a monumental task for them to beat the European giants.

Rudiger, Mendy, Bellingham, Rodrygo, and Fede Valverde are expected to be benched for this fixture and the bench strength may be tested in this match. In the pre-match press conference, Carlo Ancelotti mentioned the possibility of Nico Paz starting and also announced that Kepa will start in goal.

In Carvajal’s absence, Lucas Vazquez will start as right back with Alaba and Nacho as the centre-back pairing. In case Mendy is rested, we can expect Fran Garcia to get game time.

In the event of Nico Paz starting, Bellingham will be on the bench and get some well-deserved rest. Dani Ceballos, Kroos, and Modric will step onto the pitch as the midfield trio.

Since Vinicius’s injury, Rodrygo has been a regular starter and to prevent further injuries, Brahim Diaz can start and continue his good run of form. Joselu would partner him upfront and look to have his name on the scoresheet.

Although an inconsequential fixture for Real Madrid, they would look to cap off the group stages on a winning note and continue their dominance in the competition as they head into the Round of 16 as table toppers.

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