Group H: Prudent Real remains Champions League favourite

Paola Ditto
Settembre 13, 2017

"I am not going to revolutionise what I want to do with this team due to one bad game", Zidane insisted afterwards.

The 21-year-old has got the new campaign off to a flying start, scoring impressive goals in each leg of the Supercopa de Espana and netting twice in three La Liga appearances to date.

But that all seems a long time ago now, and Bale has desperately struggled to deliver in his last two outings, with his travails contributing heavily towards Madrid's surprise dropped points.

Another Ivorian, Yaya Toure, may fancy his chances of winning a second winner's medal following Manchester City's considerable summer of spending in what would be a ideal finale to his trophy-laden spell at the Etihad Stadium. Squandering two of them would have raised eyebrows.

Al Jazira, last season's Arabian Gulf League champions, will represent the UAE as host nation following Al Ain's elimination from the Asian Champions League on Monday, while Mexican side Pachuca, winners of the Concacaf Champions League winners, and Auckland City, the champions of Oceania, will also be competing.

Zinedine Zidane has conceded Real Madrid are lacking the options up front, after they failed to replace Alvaro Morata, following his move to Chelsea.

But this feels different.

All in all, becoming the victim and not being around to score all the goals has increased his popularity more than ever.

Zidane could take the spotlight off Bale by not starting him.

Spanish site ABC say that Asensio has an infection, caused by shaving his expensive pins.

"I hope there are many more to come, and if there are I'll be working day in day out to make yet more dreams come true", he said.

Ronaldo hit top form at the business end of last season to fire Real to a Liga and Champions League double and was allowed to report back later than his team mates for pre-season training. Paris kick off their latest bid for Champions League glory at Celtic bolstered by the big-money signings of Neymar and Kylian Mbappe. "You're a real Viking", said one of the employees at the agency that represents him, drawing a grin from the defender, who is only too happy to be associated with one of the club's nicknames.

Early in the season, Real Madrid have dealt with a number of injuries that have been hard to deal with.

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