Los Blancos have had their start to the league campaign delayed on account of their European adventures last season, but look forward to defending their La Liga crown. Sociedad, meanwhile, will attempt to improve on their creditable sixth-place finish last season.
The gap between the two teams was 31 points last season, but with both sides looking at lengthy injury lists, we could very well witness an even game. Madrid's late start to the season only allowed for training sessions, with any pre-season games being played behind closed doors.
Real Sociedad began their campaign with a trip to Real Valladolid, where they struggled to score for much of the game. Valladolid led through Miguel Herrero, but a catastrophic error in goal from Jordi Masip allowed Sociedad to equalise and escape with a draw.
Real Sociedad vs Real Madrid Head-to-Head
Real Madrid and Real Sociedad met three times last season, with 14 goals scored across 270 minutes of football. La Liga champions Madrid did the double over Sociedad in the league, including a 2-1 win at the Anoeta the last time they met, while Real Sociedad stunned Los Blancos 4-3 in the Copa Del Rey quarterfinals. Overall, of the last 10 games, Madrid have won seven, with Sociedad winning three.
Real Sociedad form guide: D-L-D-W-D
Real Madrid form guide: W-W-W-D-L
Real Sociedad vs Real Madrid Team News
Sociedad boss Imanol welcomes David Silva and Mikel Oyarzabal back into the fold after the pair recovered from COVID-19, although Willian Jose is still a doubt after contracting the disease. However, Igor Zubeldia and Martin Zubimendi have been added to the injury list, with a fit-again Ander Guevara set to start in place of Zubeldia.
Joseba Zaldua is still a doubt for this game, which means that Andoni Gorosabel will continue at right-back. Nacho Monreal is back to full fitness, however, with Aihen Munoz set to make way at left-back.
Injuries: Asier Illaramendi, Martin Merquelanz, Luca Sangalli, Martin Zubimendi
Doubtful: Igor Zubeldia, Joseba Zaldua, Willian Jose
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has plenty of fitness headaches going into the season, with Eden Hazard, Marco Asensio and Isco ruled out. Lucas Vazquez and Eder Militao were only able to do gym training as they currently have muscular issues. Gareth Bale and Sergio Reguillon are all set to sign for Tottenham, with the pair having travelled to London to finalise the deal.
Yet, such is Madrid's strength in depth that they can name most of their first-choice XI, although Zidane may opt to start Martin Odegaard against his former team.
Injuries: Eden Hazard, Marco Asensio, Isco, Lucas Vazquez, Mariano, Eder Militao
Doubtful: Luka Jovic
Real Sociedad vs Real Madrid Predicted Lineups
Real Sociedad predicted XI (4-3-3): Alex Remiro (GK); Andoni Gorosabel, Aritz Elustondo, Diego Llorente, Nacho Monreal; David Silva, Ander Guevara, Mikel Merino; Portu, Alexander Isak, Mikel Oyarzabal
Real Madrid predicted XI (4-3-3): Thibaut Courtois (GK); Dani Carvajal, Raphael Varane, Sergio Ramos, Marcelo; Toni Kroos, Casemiro, Martin Odegaard; Rodrygo, Karim Benzema, Vinicius Jr
Real Sociedad vs Real Madrid Prediction
Games at the Anoeta between Sociedad and Madrid tend to be great contests with plenty of goals. Madrid's lack of match sharpness might allow Oyarzabal and David Silva to help themselves to a few assists.
However, the pace and firepower of Madrid's attack, coupled with Odegaard's trickery, is sure to result in a glut of goals for Benzema and co. It's all set to be a winning start for Real Madrid.
Prediction: Real Sociedad 2-4 Real MadridPublished 18 Sep 2020, 22:39 IST