Thibaut Courtois for Real Madrid

Champions League Final: Ancelotti confirms Courtois will start on Saturday

Andriy Lunin will be on the bench

Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that Thibaut Courtois will start in goal for them in the UEFA Champions League final against Borussia Dortmund on Saturday. Andriy Lunin, who had started in every knockout game so far, will be on the bench.

Los Blancos are looking to clinch their record-extending 15th title in the competition, but a daunting fixture against the giant-hitters Dortmund awaits at the iconic Wembley stadium.

On paper, Ancelotti’s side are the favorites, given their experience and impeccable run of form right now, while also having won the La Liga title this season. But Dortmund have shown they are no pushovers, ousting giants like Atletico Madrid and PSG to reach here.

With the kick-off just over 24 hours away, speculations over both sides’ starting lineup are doing the rounds. Ancelotti was questioned on who he’s going to pick in goal, and the Italian confirmed it’s going to be Courtois.

He said:

“Thibaut Courtois will start tomorrow. Lunin will be on the bench.”

Ironically, Lunin has started more of their Champions League games this season, starting in eight of their 12 matches. This includes all six matches of the knockout stages. However, earlier this week, the Ukrainian custodian was struck down by flu and this perhaps influenced Ancelotti’s decision.

Courtois’ return could be a blessing in disguise

Thibaut Courtois’ selection ahead of Andriy Lunin could rather be a blessing in disguise. The Belgian made nine saves in their 2022 final win over Liverpool, winning the man-of-the-match award, as his vital interventions kept Jurgen Klopp’s juggernaut at bay. He could play a key role once again tomorrow against the likes of Donyell Malen, Nicklas Fullkrug and Sebastian Haller.

Also Read:

Next matches