Real Madrid vs Levante preview: Los Blancos look to get back to winning ways

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Credit: JOSEP LAGO

Real Madrid are yet to hit top gear into the new season, with a few hiccups to Villarreal and Real Valladolid posing as warning signs for Zinedine Zidane’s side. It won’t be that easy for them to compete for the La Liga title, but with FC Barcelona struggling without Lionel Messi, it’s safe to say the title race is still very open. Betting sites selected for UK players put Real Madrid ahead of city rivals in the title race, and a strong run in the first half of the season could see them keep up, or even overtake, Barcelona.

Los Blancos have been plagued with the injury bug early into the season. Star signing Eden Hazard is yet to start training, while James Rodriguez, Isco and even Luka Jovic recently picked up a knock. With Gareth Bale suspended as well, the options going forward are running thin.

Levante are currently 4th in the league, riding high after some impressive narrow wins early into the season. With an unpredictable attack capable of stinging oppositions, Zidane will hope Karim Benzema’s magic and his defensive strength gets the job done.

Real Madrid Predicted XI:

Courtois, Carvajal, Varane, Militao, Mendy, Kroos, Modric, Casemiro, Vasquez, Benzema, Vinicius.

Levante Predicted XI:

Fernandez, Miramon, Vezo, Postigo, Clerc, Rochina, Vukcevic, Campana, Morales, Marti, Mayoral.

Key Battles:

Karim Benzema vs Ruben Vezo

Karim Benzema is flying high early into the season, having already netted two goals and assisted one in the opening three encounters for the Los Blancos. It seems like Jovic’s arrival has reinvigorated his ruthless spirit, as he’s finding himself in prime areas, taking shots at goal and scoring some beautiful efforts. However, things won’t be easy against the solid Ruben Vezo.

The centre-back has been Levante’s shinning ray so far, averaging 2 interceptions & 1.3 tackles per game. He kept Villarreal’s attackers quiet and kept the clean-sheet against Real Valladolid(something Madrid couldn’t), as he’s an assertive, concentrated figure who won’t allow Benzema any space. The Frenchman must make the best use of his clever movement to continue his wonderful form and gain another win for Madrid.

Jose Luis Morales vs Dani Carvajal

Jose Luis Morales has been a proactive figure down the left wing for Levante, creating quite a few chances and taking repeated shots at goal. His strike against Valladolid had his season running, but now high in momentum, he’ll look to terrorize Los Blancos.

Dani Carvajal looks to be back to his best, as he assisted Bale’s goal against Villarreal in style. However, the Spaniard must be at his defensive best, putting in key challenges and stick close to Morales to stop him from freely rotating or getting in behind the backline to make things difficult for Thibaut Courtois.

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