If people thought some of the aura around Real Madrid had faded last season when they were easily beaten to the La Liga title by Barcelona and humbled by Manchester City in the Champions League, it’s certainly back in the first few months of the new campaign.
Los Blancos have won all four of their La Liga games so far this season despite a pretty extensive injury list, but they must start blending domestic commitments with the Champions League as they face Union Berlin on Wednesday evening.
The same can be said for Real Sociedad, who host Inter next week after their trip to the Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday night.
Here is the team manager Carlo Ancelotti may call upon to ensure Real Madrid get all three points against Real Sociedad in La Liga this weekend.
GK: Kepa Arrizabalaga – Firmly in place as the number one at Real Madrid with Thibaut Courtois sidelined, it will be interesting to see if Ancelotti switches to Andriy Lunin for the Champions League match.
RB: Dani Carvajal – His comments about Jenni Hermoso and Luis Rubiales may have damaged his public image, but it won’t stop Carvajal from being the first choice right-back for Ancelotti.
CB: Antonio Rudiger – The German centre-back is one of the best in the world and enjoying the opportunity created by Eder Militao’s injury.
CB: David Alaba – He rarely seems to make headlines but Alaba has become a great signing for Real Madrid in the last couple of years, one that other clubs may hold some regrets over.
LB: Fran Garcia – The Spaniard continues to keep Nacho Fernandez out of the team but with Ferland Mendy regaining fitness, Garcia will need to step things up.
CM: Federico Valverde – One of the most versatile and hard-working players in football, Valverde is almost undroppable now, particularly in games like this.
CM: Aurelien Tchouameni – It is shaping up to be a very good season for Tchouameni and he endeared himself to the fans by not entertaining any of the transfer interest in him during the summer.
CM: Eduardo Camavinga – The same can be said for Camavinga. He is a key player at Real Madrid now and could be for many years.
AM: Jude Bellingham – He carried his Real Madrid form into the international break for England and there’s no reason to believe Bellingham won’t run the show again in La Liga.
ST: Rodrygo – The Brazilian is trying to adapt to this new formation without Vinicius Junior next to him and it will be interesting to see how his role changes.
ST: Joselu – The injury to Vinicius shows why Madrid made the opportunistic move for Joselu and he seems to be doing a solid job, netting the opener against Getafe in the last game.