Real Madrid welcome Real Valladolid without the services of Luka Modric, meaning James Rodriguez gets a chance to impress.
James Rodriguez is set to start a Real Madrid match for the first time since May 2017 as Los Blancos welcome Real Valladolid in LaLiga.
Colombia international James spent the last two seasons out on loan with Bayern Munich, with his Madrid career seemingly over.
However, Bayern opted against triggering their purchase option and James has been integrated back into the Madrid squad with Zinedine Zidane’s men having so far failed to offload him.
The playmaker slots into the midfield in place of Luka Modric after the Croatia international was sent off in Madrid’s season opener last weekend – a 3-1 win at Celta Vigo.
833 – James Rodriguez will make his first start for Real Madrid in all competitions in 833 days, last starting on May 14th 2017 against Sevilla in LaLiga. Return. pic.twitter.com/lehAWx74vx
— OptaJose (@OptaJose) August 24, 2019
Gareth Bale found himself in a similar position to James during the close-season and came very close to joining Chinese side Jiangsu Suning, but that fell through and he is making his second successive LaLiga start.
The Wales winger could be in for a frosty reception from the notoriously vocal home support, however.
Madrid-owned Andriy Lunin is on the bench for visitors Valladolid.
— Real Madrid C.F. (@realmadriden) August 24, 2019