Real Madrid welcome Borussia Monchengladbach to the Estadio Alfredo Di Stefano on Wednesday (8pm kick-off, UK time) for a crunch Champions League match.
Zinedine Zidane’s side are third in Group B, with seven points from five games, meaning they need a win to be sure of qualification to the last-16.
Monchengladbach, meanwhile, are top of the tight group on eight points, having won two, drawn two and lost one of their matches. A draw would be enough for the German side, but it won’t be an easy task in the Spanish capital.
Where to watch Real Madrid vs Monchengladbach on TV:
- UK: BT Sport 3
- US: UniMas & TUDN
Real Madrid vs Monchengladbach online live stream:
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Scoreline prediction: Real Madrid 3-2 Monchengladbach
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Real Madrid vs Monchengladbach build-up, pre-match team news & previous lineups:
Marco Rose’s side have netted 16 goals in five games this season — a tally matched only by Barcelona and Bayern Munich — and will threaten a Real Madrid defence which has shipped nine goals in the group stages so far.
If Real go out it would be the first time they’ve ever been eliminated in the group stage of the Champions League, having progressed from all 28 of their previous campaigns in this initial phase of the tournament.
Zidane’s side have lost four of their last seven Champions League matches, but simply can’t afford another slip up. Who will come out on top in Madrid?
- Real Madrid (vs Sevilla): Courtois; Vazquez, Varane, Nacho, Mendy; Modric, Casemiro, Kroos; Rodrygo, Benzema, Vinicius.
- Monchengladbach (vs Freiburg): Sommer; Lainer, Ginter, Kramer, Wendt; Zakaria, Neuhaus; Wolf, Stindl, Plea; Embolo.
The headline news for Real Madrid is that Sergio Ramos is back available, having been absent since last month’s international break when he went off injured in Spain’s 6-0 win over Germany. He could replace Nacho in central defence.
Dani Carvalhal is also available for Zidane, meaning Lucas Vazquez might move forward or drop out of the starting XI which beat Sevilla 1-0 on the weekend. Martin Odegaard is a doubt, while Eden Hazard is also out injured.
Gladbach are without Nico Elvedi and Tony Jantschke, meaning Christoph Kramer will likely continue at centre-back. Marcus Thuram is likely to come back into the side, after being named on the bench for the 2-2 draw against Freiburg on the weekend.
Players to watch:
Real Madrid: The return of Sergio Ramos is huge for Madrid, who have struggled in recent weeks without their talismanic centre-back. The previous five games between the two sides have seen 20 goals scored, at an average of four per game, so Ramos’ presence will be key to slowing the scoring rate. Ramos has missed La Liga games against Villarreal, Alaves and Sevilla and the Champions League ties against Inter and Shakhtar Donetsk, with Real winning just two of those games in his absence. On a night when defeat simply won’t be tolerated, he is the man you want leading from the back.
Monchengladbach: Real Madrid don’t need reminding how dangerous Gladbach are, having needed two late goals to draw 2-2 in the reverse fixture. It was Marcus Thuram who did the damage in that game, but it is Alassane Plea who is the man in form now. The diminutive French forward scored a hat-trick in Gladbach’s stunning 6-0 win over Shakhtar Donetsk and netted twice in their 3-2 defeat by Inter Milan last time out in the Champions League. He is only the third Frenchman to score two or more in back-to-back Champions League games, after Juventus’ David Trezeguet in 2003 and Real Madrid’s Karim Benzema in 2019.