Real Madrid coach Julen Lopetegui: There's life (for me) after El Clasico

Real Madrid coach Julen Lopetegui: There's life (for me) after El Clasico

It will be the first Clasico without either Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo since 2007. "We always play as a team, and we have a recognizable playing style, but Messi gives us that touch of brilliance".

With Samuel Umtiti and Thomas Vermaelen injured, Clement Lenglet and Gerard Pique will again play in central defence for Barca and will have to be wary of Inter striker Mauro Icardi, who has four goals in Serie A this season and is being touted as a possible future signing for Real Madrid. Sunday's fixture will be different as both players will miss the game because Ronaldo has swapped Los Blancos for Juventus in the Italian Seria A, while Messi is out of the game due to injury.

Real Madrid head to the El Clasico showdown at Camp Nou, keen on improving their seventh spot placing, four points adrift of Barcelona, at the top of the La Liga log.

Also, Madrid's new number 7 and Ronaldo's "successor", Mariano Diaz, will have to prove himself as a potential go-to guy for the team. We come into the game on the back of two good matches and it's the culmination of an important week.

"Madrid will be even more unsafe", Valverde said Wednesday. Right-back Dani Carvajal and Jesus Vallejo. For the first time in almost 11 years, the two sides will take to the field with neither Lionel Messi nor Cristiano Ronaldo in their respective squad sheets.

"We are very happy for the match, against a team that was going to make things very hard for us, we played very well". "Then when we have to defend, we will defend".

Messi cheered and lifted his good left arm in victory after his teammates showed more than enough class to convincingly beat Inter Milan 2-0 even without its best player.

Messi has been in scintillating form this season, scoring seven and laying on another five goals in Spain's top flight, while also hitting five in the Champions League.

Best of luck and let us know how you get on.

Inter's halftime substitute Matteo Politano anxious Marc-Andre ter Stegen twice shortly after coming on, first with a cross that the Barcelona goalkeeper had to parry and then with a shot that went high.

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