Tomorrow`s trip to the Vicente Calderon stadium to face Athletico Madrid is a must win game for Mourinho`s whites. If Barcelona beat Getafe tonight, they will be a single point behind the leaders. Real are boosted, however, by the return to fitness of Di Maria, Lass and Carvalho.
Recent form suggests no problem for Real, as they have not lost a derby in over ten years. Mourinho can pick any team he wishes, with his only concern being the accumulation of yellow cards. Ronaldo, Alonso and Coentrao are one yellow away from suspension, with Di Maria, Kaka, Higuain and Khedira two yellows away from suspension.
Real are at home to Sporting Gijon next before they visit the Nou camp, which could decide la liga. It might be better if Ronaldo and Alonso picked up yellows tomorrow and missed the game against Sporting who are languishing at the foot of the table.
Tomorrow`s game is not being taken lightly though. Athletico have their top scorer Falcao back and they are chasing a champion`s league place for next season. Captain Iker Casillas has stated that “every year they are more eager to beat us” and has acknowledged manager Diego Simeone`s positive effect as ” a new and fresh air….they use the ball very well.”