Real Madrid - Sporting Gijon Preview: Mourinho's side can stretch their Liga lead to seven points with victory

Los Merengues begin a potentially season-defining week with a home encounter against Javier Clemente's men, followed straight after by trips to Bayern Munich and Barcelona



Arbeloa, Pepe, Ramos, Coentrao
Khedira, Sahin
Higuain, Ozil, Callejon

Juan Pablo
Orfila, Botia, Hernandez, Canella
Lora, Cases
Trejo, Colunga, De las Cuevas

Jose Mourinho may opt to rest some of his players for Saturday's visit of Sporting Gijon with an eye on the midweek Champions League semi-final away to Bayern Munich.

Ricardo Carvalho (thigh) remains sidelined, while Nuri Sahin is in line to make his first La Liga start in place of the suspended Xabi Alonso.

Cristiano Ronaldo could start on the bench, as the Portugal star will miss next week's El Clasico through suspension should he pick up a yellow card.

Sporting will be without Gregory, Sebastian Eguren and Carmelo, who are all sidelined through injury.

Pedro Orfila, Roberto Canella and Oscar Trejo sustained knocks in Wednesday's win over Levante but are expected to make the trip to the capital.

  • Real Madrid are on a 17-match unbeaten run in La Liga (W14, D3).
  • Los Merengues need to score four more goals to surpass their own record for most goals struck in a single Liga season (107 in 1989-90).
  • Should Crisitiano Ronaldo (pictured right) score on Saturday, he will beat his own record for most goals scored by a player in a single Liga campaign (40 in 2010-11).
  • Sporting Gijon have won just three of their last 15 matches in La Liga.
  • Having shipped an average of 1.9 goals per game this season, the Asturians have the leakiest defence in the Primera Division.
  • A Miguel de las Cuevas goal gave Sporting a famous 1-0 win at the Bernabeu in this corresponding fixture last season.