Julen Lopetegui could get a morale victory against Viktoria Plzen on Tuesday night with the budding Classic.
The Whites started the 2018-19 campaign in an unconnected way, with the club feeling the effects of losing Zinedine Zidane and Cristiano Ronaldo in the same summer.
Real should have few problems against Czech champion Plzen, but could achieve it with a few goals, and a clean sheet, to gain confidence before his trip on October 28 to Camp Nou to face Lionel Messi and Barcelona.
The holders of the Champions League also have work to do to have the opportunity to retain their trophy, with a defeat at CSKA Moscow in the week of game 2 leaving Group G in the balance.
• Levante defeated Madrid 2-1 at home on Saturday, extending their career without a win to five games (D1 L4) that go back to September 22. That represents its worst sequence of results since May 2009 (L5).
• Marcelo scored in the 72nd minute of Saturday, Madrid’s first goal in five games. His 482-minute unadjusted run is a club record, surpassing the previous total of 464 minutes set in April 1985.
• Sergio Ramos was the target of a 3-2 defeat at Spain’s home against England in the League of Nations on October 15; he had also scored in the 4-1 friendly win against Wales four days earlier.
• A penalty by Toni Kroos gave Germany the lead in France in the UEFA League of Nations on October 16, its 14th goal in 90 internationals, although the visitors lost 2-1.
• Gareth Bale returned as a part-time substitute on Saturday, having been out with a muscle problem since the 1-0 defeat at Alavés on 6 October, when Karim Benzema was withdrawn at halftime with a thigh injury. The Frenchman was replaced for 60 minutes against Levante on Saturday.
• Isco had been out of action since September 22 with appendicitis but started against Levante.
• A problem with the calves has kept Dani Carvajal out from the second day.
• Real Madrid were beaten 4-2 by Atlético neighbors in the UEFA Super Cup on August 15, their first final defeat in the international competition since losing to Boca Juniors in the 2000 European-South American Cup.
• Luka Modrić was voted the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year for 2017/18 on 30 August. The Croatian also picked up the award for the UEFA Champions League midfielder, with his club mates Keylor Navas and Sergio Ramos collecting the prizes for the Goalkeeper and the Defender, respectively.
• Plzeň suffered three consecutive away defeats in all competitions: conceding 12 goals when losing in Slavia Praha (0-4) and Jablonec (0-3) in the Czech league, in addition to the 5-0 reverse in Rome in the second day – before the victory in the Czech Cup 5-1 in Vyškov on October 11. They were 2-2 in Bohemians on Friday.
• The result of Rome was Plzeň’s strongest defeat since a 5-0 defeat at Slavia in May 2016.
• Twelve of the 17 goals in the Plze this league this season have been scored in the last 30 minutes of games, including seven in the last 15.
• Michael Krmenčík scored in the 2-1 victory of the UEFA League of the Czech Republic in Slovakia on 13 October.
• Radim Řezník (concussion) and Lukáš Hejda (muscle) missed the Czech Republic’s matches against Slovakia and Ukraine due to injury, although both played in the Bohemians on Friday.
• Jan Kopic has been sidelined since Plzeň’s 1-0 victory against Sparta on September 28 due to an ankle injury.
• The official club shirts for the UEFA Champions League group stage feature a logo that promotes the national registry of bone marrow donors on the back. All Plzeň senior and sub-19 players have joined the registry.