Clasico team news: Ronaldo on bench, Deulofeu takes Neymar role for Supercopa opener

ShareClose Comments
The striker reprises his secondary role of the UEFA Super Cup in Sunday's curtain-raiser, while Barca begin life without their Brazilian star

Cristiano Ronaldo once more starts from the Real Madrid bench as the La Liga champions take on Clasico rivals Barcelona in Sunday's Supercopa first leg at Camp Nou. 

The Portugal international played only seven minutes of Madrid's UEFA Super Cup victory over Manchester United, and will not feature from kick-off in the traditional curtain-raiser to the Spanish season.

Instead Isco will start in an advanced position alongside the other two members of the BBC, Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema. 

Suspended Luka Modric is the only other absentee from Madrid's habitual line-up, and is replaced in the middle of the pitch by Mateo Kovacic.

Sitting alongside Ronaldo on the bench will be Dani Ceballos, the former Betis whizzkid who could make his debut for the Blancos if he sees game time in this opener.

Real Madrid put sleepy Barca to shame

Returned La Masia graduate Gerard Deulofeu, meanwhile, is given the chance to stake his claim for Neymar's role on the left of the Barcelona attack. 

The Brazilian's exit has seen Barca linked with some of the world's highest-profile attackers as a possible replacement, but it is the ex-Everton man who will have the chance to shine back in front of the Camp Nou faithful. 

Elsewhere there are few surprises in the Catalans' starting XI, with new coach Ernesto Valverde having the luxury of a full-strength squad to choose from in his competitive debut at the helm. 

Aleix Vidal is preferred to new signing Nelson Semedo on the right side of defence, while Javier Mascherano is left out for Samuel Umtiti in the middle.

Barcelona: Ter Stegen; Vidal, Pique, Umtiti, Alba; Busquets, Rakitic, Iniesta; Messi, Suarez, Deulofeu.

Article continues below

Substitutes: Cillessen, Semedo, Denis, Mascherano, Alcacer, Digne, Roberto.

Real Madrid: Navas; Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Marcelo; Kroos, Casemiro, Kovacic; Bale, Benzema, Isco.

Substitutes: Casilla, Nacho, Ronaldo, Vazquez, Theo Hernandez, Asensio, Ceballos. 

Next article:
Conte addresses Chelsea exit talk
Next article:
Harambee Stars keeper reveals secret behind his heroics
Next article:
Liverpool are no Man City, but the exploits of Coutinho, Salah & Co. should still be enjoyed
Next article:
President Kenyatta congratulate Harambee Stars for lifting Cecafa
Next article:
Former Chelsea star Mikel rules out Premier League return as Everton rumours surface