Sep 1, 2013 at 11am UK at ​Estadio Santiago Bernabeu
Real Madrid
Athletic Bilbao
Isco (26', 73'), Ronaldo (45')
Khedira (29')
FT(HT: 2-0)
Gomez (79')
Gurpegui (21'), Benat (67')

Preview: Real Madrid vs. Athletic Bilbao

PSG manager Carlo Ancelotti on the touchline on December 21, 2012
© Getty Images
Sports Mole previews Sunday's La Liga clash between Real Madrid and Athletic Bilbao at the Bernabeu.

Real Madrid will attempt to make it nine points from three league games when they welcome a new-look Athletic Bilbao side to the Bernabeu in Sunday's early start.

The Gareth Bale saga continues to develop in the Spanish capital, but Madrid have made a positive start to the campaign with back-to-back wins over Real Betis and Granada last time out.

Bilbao, now under the stewardship of Ernesto Valverde, have also been in impressive form, however, with victories over Real Valladolid and Osasuna giving them six points after the same number of games.

They have not enjoyed facing Madrid in recent seasons, however, losing each of their last five matches with the former Spanish champions, conceding 18 goals in the process.

Madrid will still be without the services of Sami Khedira and Asier Illarramendi, but the midfield pair have both returned to first-team training this week.

Trio Mesut Ozil, Angel di Maria and Karim Benzema have all been linked with moves away from the Bernabeu in recent weeks, but all three should start this weekend.

Daniel Carvajal will also hope for a spot at right-back, but Alvaro Arbeloa's performance against Granada last time out could keep the Spaniard in the team.

Bilbao midfielder Ander Herrera has been the subject of a bid from Manchester United on Friday, but it appears that the Basque outfit are unwilling to sell the midfielder, meaning that he should start in the middle of their midfield.

Aritz Aduriz should also keep his place in attack alongside Iker Muniain, but summer signing from Osasuna Kike Sola is also pushing for a place.

Recent form

Madrid: WW

Bilbao: WW

Possible lineups

Madrid: Lopez; Arbeloa, Pepe, Ramos, Marcelo; Modric, Isco, Ozil; Di Maria, Ronaldo, Benzema

Bilbao: Iago; Iraola, Laporte, Saborit, Gurpegui; Herrera, Benat, Iturraspe; Muniain, Aduriz, Sola

Sports Mole says: 3-1

Villareal's Cani in action on October 18, 2011
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