Real Madrid have looked good in preseason, with the players slowly but surely coming to terms with working under a new manager. The Los Blancos play the final match of their preseason tour of Australia and China with an International Champions Cup match against AC Milan in Shanghai on Thursday.
Rafa Benitez will be pleased with the progress from his team, with Real Madrid managing impressive wins over Manchester City, at the MCG in Australia, and Inter Milan, in Guangzhou, China.
Goals have come pretty easily following that opening 0-0 draw against Roma, and Milan will have to defend really well if they are to stop the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and James Rodriguez from scoring.
"We are in a preseason where we have seen the team play well and show 100% commitment," Real Madrid manager Benitez was quoted by the club's official website. "They are all good footballers and have given it their all.
"I have an amazing team and I'm very happy with it. My aim is to get great performances out of a great group. I'm focused on helping the players improve every day. When we arrive in Madrid we will make all necessary evaluations."
Benzema and Luka Modric have been carrying niggles in this preseason, but they took part in training on Wednesday, suggesting they could play some minutes against Milan in the International Champions Cup 2015 game, while it will be interesting to see just what mindset Sergio Ramos will now be in with Marca suggesting the defender has finally agreed a new contract with Real Madrid, quashing any chances of Manchester United making a move.
"They trained with the team today and might play," Benitez added. "Right now we haven't decided on the team yet because we've just finished training. We have confidence in all the players and lots of different options.
"The lineup is not as important as those who go take to the pitch playing to the level worthy of Real Madrid."
Milan won their first game in China – a 1-0 result over Inter Milan thanks to a stunning goal from Philippe Mexes – and manager Sinisa Mihajlovic is determined to finish their preseason tour on a winning note.
"The objective was to do well and on Thursday we want to finish on a high," Mihajlovic told the club's website. "It's important that Milan get back amongst the top sides in Europe. It will be hard, but we'll try and win again on Thursday.
"We always try, regardless of our opponents, to impose our style of play. We must always try and control the match. We know Real Madrid are a strong side but during the match I am expecting confirmations and improvements.
"I look at the performance to understand what we did well and where we have to improve. We're Milan and so we must always come off the pitch with our heads held high, play to win and play with our style of play."
Where to Watch Live
Real Madrid vs Milan is scheduled for an 8 pm local time (5.30 pm IST, 1 pm BST) start with live coverage in India on Star Sports 4. The match can also be watched via live streaming online on Starsports.com and Hotstar.
Audience in the UK and Ireland can watch Real Madrid vs Milan live on Sky Sports 1, while the International Champions Cup match can also be live streamed on Sky Go UK.
Viewers in China can watch the preseason friendly live on G-Sports.