Real Madrid Boosted as Marcelo, Luka Modric, Toni Kroos in Squad to Face PSG

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 5, 2018

The awardees for the FIFA FIFPro World11 award, (LtoR) Real Madrid and Brazil's defender Marcelo, Real Madrid and Croatia's midfielder Luka Modric and Real Madrid and Germany's midfielder Toni Kroos pose on stage during The Best FIFA Football Awards ceremony, on January 9, 2017 in Zurich. / AFP / Fabrice COFFRINI        (Photo credit should read FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP/Getty Images)
FABRICE COFFRINI/Getty Images

Real Madrid have included Marcelo, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos in their squad to face Paris Saint-Germain in the second leg of their UEFA Champions League last-16 tie on Tuesday.

Los Blancos tweeted the news on Monday:

Marcelo returned to action for Real on Saturday as a substitute against Getafe after three matches spent injured on the sidelines, while Modric has missed their last four La Liga outings and Kroos their last five.

ESPN's Dermot Corrigan believes Kroos and Modric's fitness could make their inclusion in the starting lineup against PSG a gamble at the Parc des Princes:

The pair are crucial players in Madrid's midfield, as they offer stability and control in the centre of the park, as well as creativity and the occasional goal. However, it is not guaranteed they will feature despite their inclusion in the squad.

Their absence would make it much easier for PSG to dominate proceedings as they seek to overturn the 3-1 deficit from the first leg, but that could similarly be the case if they are on the pitch but not able to operate at full capacity.

Real boss Zinedine Zidane said he will simply get on with the task at hand and turn to others in his squad if they are not able to feature, per Goal:

Mateo Kovacic, while not at the same level as Kroos or Modric, can be a strong alternative, but Zidane appears to have little trust in Dani Ceballos, who was not even in the matchday squad to face Getafe on Saturday.

Marcelo seems a safe bet to feature after he played 25 minutes in the 3-1 win over Getafe and put in an impressive showing, per SB Nation's Managing Madrid:

The Brazil international provided an assist during his second-half cameo, and he will perhaps be ready to start on Tuesday.

Madrid's fitness concerns will encourage PSG, but the French side have worries of their own, with Neymar out and Kylian Mbappe's fitness in doubt. Even if Real aren't at their strongest, their opponents may struggle to capitalise.

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