Real Madrid vs. Athletic Bilbao 2012: Preview and TV schedule

Manuel Queimadelos Alonso

Madrid look to win their fifth straight La Liga match and try to keep up some semblance of pressure on their league leading rivals

After a bumpy start to the season, Real Madrid have settled in to a rhythm in the league, winning six of their last seven matches. They've climbed up to third in the table, but remain eight points behind Barcelona who simply won't stop winning league matches. If Madrid have any hope of catching them, they'll have to avoid any more slip-ups and hope Barca start dropping points.

Jose Mourinho will have Cristiano Ronaldo and Mesut Özil at his disposable today after both players recovered from minor injuries picked up last week against Levante.

Bilbao will be missing two midfielders thanks to card suspensions and starting central defender Fernando Amorebieta is doubtful as well. That won't help Marcelo Bielsa as he tries to get his side out of the mid-table and overcome the fact that his team has lost five straight league matches against Madrid. Los Leones have been just plain bad on the road, with only one victory in their last 13 away matches.

Real Madrid injuries and suspensions

Out: Gonzalo Higuain (hamstring), Marcelo (foot), Fábio Coentrão (thigh). In doubt: Sami Khedira (thigh), Karim Benzema (groin).

Athletic Bilbao injuries and suspensions

Out: Ander Herrera (suspended), Oscar de Marcos (suspended).. In Doubt: Inigo Perez (ankle), Borja Ekiza (ankle), Fernando Amorebieta (knock).

Khedira and Benzema are expected to be ready anda available for the match, but Gonzalo Higuain's hamstring will keep him sidelined. For Bilbao, Perez and Ekiza are extremely doubtful with ankle injuries, while Amorebieta will be a pre-match decision after picking up a knock on international duty.

Match Date/Time: 11 p.m. local, 4 p.m. ET

Venue: Estadio Santiago Bernabéu, Madrid, Spain

TV: beIN Sport 1 (U.S.), Sky Sports 4 (U.K.)

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