The first Clasico of the season is nigh, and Goal.com takes a look at what can be expected ahead of Sunday's showdown between the Liga giants
|Real Madrid (4-2-3-1)
Casillas; Arbeloa, Pepe, Carvalho, Marcelo; Alonso, Khedira; Ozil, Di Maria, Ronaldo; Benzema
Jose Mourinho is expected to field his strongest available XI on Sunday in the first leg of the Supercopa Final with Madrid missing a trio players due to injury. Sergio Ramos, Esteban Granero and summer signing Nuri Sahin are those set to miss out for los Blancos.
Ten Madrid players were on international duty during the week, with Xabi Alonso, Alvaro Arbeloa, Iker Casilla and Raul Albiol returning to training on Saturday following Spain's 2-1 defeat to Italy.
Valdes; Dani Alves, Pique, Puyol, Abidal; Mascherano; Xavi, Iniesta; Pedro, Messi, Villa
Barcelona may have to face to Real Madrid without several key players following knocks to Gerard Pique, Sergio Busquets and Xavi whilst on international duty for Spain. Xavi trained with the first team on Friday and is expected to recover in time for Sunday whilst Pique and Sergio will both face fitness test on Saturday to determine if they can play.
Pep Guardiola is expected to name a strong outfit but new signing Alexis Sanchez is likely to start on the bench for the current La Liga champions.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- Real Madrid have won the Supercopa on eight occasions, one less than their closest rivals Barcelona.
- Mourinho's men earned their place in the final following their Copa del Rey victory over Barcelona.
- Los Blancos last lost at the Bernabeu in the Supercopa against Sevilla in 2007.
- Real Madrid last featured in the final in 2008, beating Valencia in the final.
- Madrid's pre-season has seen Mourinho's side score 27 goals in just seven games.
- Barcelona have enjoyed recent success against los Blancos, winning two of the five El Clasico's last season.
- The Catalan side are the current holders of the Supercopa following a 5-3 aggregate victory over Sevilla last season.
- It was back in 1997 when these two giants of Spanish football last contested this trophy; los Blancos the winners on that occasion after overturning a first-leg 2-1 deficit.
- In fact, Real Madrid have won all four meetings between these two teams in the Supercopa.