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La Liga Preview: Granada - Real Madrid
La Liga Preview: Granada - Real Madrid

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La Liga Preview: Granada - Real Madrid

Asier Illarramendi could be in line to make his Real Madrid debut when Los Blancos travel to Granada in La Liga on Monday.

The midfielder moved to the Bernabeu from Real Sociedad in July, but he failed to make an appearance in preseason as he recovered from muscle injuries sustained during the European Under-21 championship, which he helped Spain win.

He took part in full training ahead of Monday's game and will be a useful boost to Carlo Ancelotti's midfield numbers. Xabi Alonso (foot) and Sami Khedira (knee) have been absent from training recently, with the former definitely ruled out.

Khedira limped out of Madrid's narrow 2-1 win over Betis last week and is likely to be replaced by Brazilian Casemiro, who came on in his place in the home victory.

Raphael Varane remains unavailable for selection due to a knee injury suffered at the end of last season, leaving Sergio Ramos and Pepe as the only senior center backs available to Ancelotti.

Isco is likely to continue in the creative hub for Madrid after scoring the late winner last week. Jorge Molina had given the Betis a 14th-minute lead before Karim Benzema equalized shortly afterwards.

A frustrating game for Madrid looked to be heading for a draw, until the former Malaga man nodded home on his home debut in the dying embers.

Granada also kicked off the league campaign with a 2-1 success, impressively turning over Osasuna away from home. Two goals in the space of seven first-half minutes from Hassan Yebda and Youssef El-Arabi were enough to seal the points.

Coach Lucas Alcaraz is likely to be without captain Diego Mainz, who was forced to sit out the win over Osasuna. Goalkeeper Roberto will once again play through the pain of a toe injury, but experienced striker Carlos Aranda is sidelined.

Guilherme Siqueira was left out of Alcaraz's team last week amid rumors of a move to Liverpool or Real Madrid, with the manager admitting that the left back is unlikely to feature for the club unless he remains after the transfer window closes.

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