Madrid, Sep 17 (IANS) Striker Alvaro Morata is hoping he will get another chance in the Real Madrid starting 11 when the capital football club travels to play Espanyol in La Liga on Sunday.
Morata’s 94th minute header goal on Wednesday night gave Real Madrid an unlikely victory in their UEFA Champions League opener at home against Sporting Lisbon, reports Xinhua.
However, it escaped nobody’s notice that he had to come of the subs’ bench after the return to fitness of Karim Benzema saw him lose the place in the starting 11 he had enjoyed at the start of the season.
Morata, who returned from Juventus over the summer, has said in interviews that he knew he would have to battle for his place.
But with Benzema still looking out of shape following his back injury, the striker should return for the trip to Barcelona.
“The important thing is to win and for us to know that the team is not just 11 players,” he assured, adding that Real Madrid had so far enjoyed a “good start to the season.”
Real Madrid will travel to face Espanyol as leaders of the La Liga for the first time in over a year and will be optimistic of defeating a side they beat 6-0 both home and away last campaign.
With a further round of league matches in midweek, head coach Zinedine Zidane will make changes to his starting 11 and Morata has a good chance of returning to action, while Pepe should also return in central defense and Marcos Asensio should at least be on the bench after missing out in midweek.
Asensio played on loan for Espanyol last season and can expect a good reception from the home fans.
Espanyol have toughened up since Quique Sanchez Flores arrived as coach over the summer with the signing of several experienced players, although they are still without a win and will be without midfielder Javi Fuego through suspension.