Real Madrid will return tomorrow (Wednesday) to play in the Champions League, the factory with which it is so identified, when it will host Bergamo for a not-so-simple meeting against Atlanta in the eighth round of the Champions League. The rematch in Spain will take place on March 16.
It will not be easy at all for the Blancos, who are facing an extreme blow of injury, with no less than nine players absent – Karim Benzema, Sergio Ramos, Eden Hazard, Rodrigo, Pada Valverda, Marcelo, Albero Odriosola, Adar Milito and Danny Carvajal. Young Miguel Gutierrez, Victor Chost, Antonio Blanco, Sergio Aribas and Hugo Doro will be included in the squad.
Therefore, coach Zinedine Zidane is expected to start with Mariano Diaz on the sidelines, with Marco Asensio and Vinicius Jr. playing alongside him. Nacho Fernandez will play in the center of defense, Lucas Vasquez as a right-back. What can be comforting is perhaps that the dominant link trio is fit, but Casimiro will have to be careful of yellow so as not to miss the reciprocity.
The good news comes from the direction of Sergio Ramos, who according to the media in Spain is set to return from injury directly to the second game against Atlanta. Other encouraging news is the fact that the club’s 73-year-old president, Florentino Perez, has recovered from Corona.
Real will become tomorrow for the first time ever to record its 100th game in the knockout stages of the Champions League – more than any other team. She’s the oldest team in the factory, and this is her 51st campaign, while she meets the youngest team in the factory, Atlanta, for whom this is the second campaign – and the second in a row, after being knocked out in the quarter-finals by Paris Saint-Germain last season.
Zidane Complimented ahead of the meeting with an opponent from Italy, who is known for its excellent attacking play and only in the last round of Serie A recorded an impressive 2: 4 over Napoli. The French coach said: “We know which team is Atlanta and I have maximum respect for them.”
On the other hand, the Bergamo team will come away with one significant setback – Hans Tabor, the right-back, who has been absent for the past three weeks due to injury. Josip Ilicic and Duban Spata will lead the Italians’ attack in an attempt to surprise the less experienced team that Real will present tomorrow.
Atlanta Coach, Jan Piero Gasparini, We said ahead of the match: “We have never met Real before, so only on the pitch can we understand its strength. It is one of the best teams in the world, but we always came out of these games with a little more knowledge and quality. Obviously the ideal result for us is a victory. Of the highest levels and we will have to play in the best way we can. “