Zidane’s back-up plans to take on Man City and Barcelona without Hazard

Real Madrid will be without Eden Hazard for upcoming matches against Manchester City and Barcelona.

The Belgian suffered another injury setback, fracturing his ankle against Levante on Saturday, and is likely to miss the majority of the rest of this season.

His absence won’t be a shock for Los Blancos, who have had to do without him for the last three months anyway.

Nevertheless, what options does Zinedine Zidane have without the former Chelsea forward available?

If the Real Madrid boss wants to go out and dominate possession, the logical thing would be to choose to deploy five midfielders.

It worked during the Supercopa de Espana ties against Valencia and Atletico Madrid as Casemiro, Fede Valverde, Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Isco all started.

A system with wingers would give Zidane more options to use. Gareth Bale could come in to play on the right while Vinicius Junior could take Hazard’s place on the left.

Elsewhere, Rodrygo Goes and Lucas Vazquez are suited to either wing too. However, the former won’t be available for the Clasico having been sent off playing for Castilla on Sunday.

There’s also the option to play four midfielders and have two central strikers in front of them. Each of Luka Jovic, Bale, Vinicius or Rodrygo could partner Benzema up top in this system.

With just a matter of days until Pep Guardiola’s City visit the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu, Zidane doesn’t have long to make up his mind.