How Ancelotti’s Real Madrid will line up next season July 24, 2021 by Jürgen Götze With no money to spend and a number of key players leaving the club, there’s no doubt that Real Madrid will be hoping for Carlo Ancelotti to work wonders in Spain next season. Los Blancos were well off the pace in Europe and domestically in Zinedine Zidane’s last season and in many ways Ancelotti is inheriting a team that simply isn’t good enough. However, there’s still life in this old squad yet, and while the team may lack depth or incentive, Ancelotti’s starting XI for next season may still be perfectly capable of challenging for silverware. Defence While Real Madrid have a number of impressive defenders, there’s no doubt that their back line could take a real beating in the summer transfer window. Not only has club captain Sergio Ramos already departed for Paris Saint-Germain, but it now seems certain that Raphael Varane will also move on and take up Manchester United’s offer of moving to the Premier League. As such, Ancelotti is likely to be left with Eder Militao as his main first-choice central defender, alongside new signing David alaba. Despite his impressive performances last season, Nacho Fernandez will likely move into a back-up role for the central positions. On the left flank Ancelotti will likely reinstate Ferland Mendy as the club’s left-back, with Marcelo as a backup, while Daniel Carvajal is likely to tip Alvaro Odriozola to the right-back spot if he can maintain his fitness. Martin Odegaard is likely to demand game time next season at Madrid Midfield Fortunately for Ancelotti, the midfield should be a far easier nut to crack as the senior manager has a number of old and new faces to pick from. It seems unlikely that the Italian coach will venture too far from last season’s tried and tested trio of Casemiro in the defensive midfield position, with Toni Kroos and Luka Modric in front as Madrid’s main playmakers. The return of Martin Odegaard may put pressure on Ancelotti to swap in the Norwegian talent for either Kroos or Modric throughout the season, but aside from that we shouldn’t expect too many changes to the status quo. Attack It will be in Madrid’s forward line that we’ll likely see this team either make or break the forthcoming season. Eden Hazard could play a major role for Madrid next season Karim Benzema is unlikely to see a drop off in his game following another impressive season with Madrid, but in Eden Hazard on the left and the likely return of Gareth Bale on the right there’s no doubt that Ancelotti will be taking a gamble on two senior forwards that may be long past their best. Ancelotti does have a number of back-up forwards that can fill in when required in the form of Rodrygo, Luka Jovic, Vinicius Junior and Marco Assensio. But it remains to be seen whether any of them can elbow their way past Madrid’s star-studded front line.