Tactics, pre-game plans, Courtois and Modric — Real Madrid round-up

Real Madrid's Thibaut Courtois threatens to sue Spanish paper for Mourinho, Conte claims

No Messi or Ronaldo but Clasico could still define season

"Madrid will be even more unsafe", Valverde said on Wednesday.

Club captain Sergio Ramos, Marcelo and Toni Kroos have all publicly backed their coach in recent weeks, and Lopetegui said he did not think his players had anything else in mind at the moment but performing at their best in the Clasico.

MISSING GOALS When Real Madrid sold Ronaldo in July, fans and local media alike all asked the same question: how do you replace him?

Karim Benzema was long seen as the ideal strike partner for Cristiano Ronaldo, with the French striker often setting up goals for CR7.

"It is hard to deal with the exit of a man who guarantees you 40 or 50 goals a season", the Chilean explained to Goal .

Rafinha constantly harassed Inter's players when they had possession, and he stole the ball from Matias Vecino to spark the move that led to his first goal in 18 Champions League appearances.

Madrid have won just one of their last six games in all competitions and are without a win in La Liga since they beat Espanyol on September 22, a run spanning four games.

Bale has been slow to start the season but does have three goals in eight La Liga appearances to his name. 'With or without Messi, that is what earned us the league title previous year'.

The Nerazzurri lost 2-0 at Camp Nou last night, but they remain five points clear of both Tottenham Hotspur and PSV in Champions League group B. With 15 minutes left to play, Bale scored a stunning equaliser with a shot from outside the box.

Messi will be back in El Clasico of course, but never against Ronaldo.

The 26-year-old has started in seven league games for Los Blancos this season.

"When Madrid are hurting, that's when they're at their most unsafe". The Spanish global is no stranger to scoring in El Clasico with his curling strike from outside the box sealing a 2-0 win the in the Super Cup in 2017.

Former Real Madrid star Ivan Zamorano admits that the Merengue are struggling without Cristiano Ronaldo, with his incredible goalscoring abilities most keenly missed by the club.

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