Real Madrid International Break Roundup: How 14 Bernabeu Stars Fared for Their Countries

​Given the abundance of talent at the Bernabeu, it is unsurprising that 14 Real Madrid players received call-ups for their countries over the international break. Most received considerable game time for their nations, though some will have been left frustrated by a lack of minutes on the pitch.

Here’s a roundup of how Real’s internationals got on over the past week.

Spain (Sergio Ramos, Dani Ceballos and Marco Asensio)


Los Blancos’ captain was pivotal for the 2010 world champions, starting in central defence for their European qualifiers against Norway and Malta. A delightful panenka penalty proved decisive in a 2-1 victory over the former, Ramos then helping his side keep a clean sheet against the Maltese three days later.

Likewise, Marco Asensio began both matches for Spain, but failed to get on the scoresheet in either. He looked dangerous against the Lions and went close with a couple of efforts, though the youngster struggled to make an impact in Valletta in the second game.

Dani Ceballos was selected in the midfield against Norway, but was relatively quiet in a testing encounter; with a second half booking his only noteworthy involvement. He was then an unused substitute in the following fixture, watching on as an Alvaro Morata brace secured a 2-0 win.

Spain Under-21 (Sergio Reguilón and Jesús Vallejo)

Jorge Mere,Jesus Vallejo

Sergio Reguilón and Jesus Vallejo were impressive in the Under-21 set-up as their team secured successive victories without conceding. The pair started in defence for the slender 1-0 win over Romania, keeping the backline organised and staying resolute.

Reguilón found himself on the bench for the next game, an excellent 3-0 triumph over Austria. His counterpart once again began in the heart of Spain’s defence, dominating the opposing forwards before coming off for the final 15 minutes.

Belgium (Thibaut Courtois)


The former Chelsea goalkeeper played every minute for the Red Devils as they recorded two wins at the start of their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign. He had a nightmare in the first – a 3-1 defeat of Russia – as his blunder allowed the visitors to draw level, a double from Eden Hazard ultimately sparing his blushes.

There were no such errors in Cyprus later in the week, Belgium comfortably seeing off Cyprus. Thibaut Courtois was largely a bystander, having little to do in the way of saves during a 2-0 victory over the minnows.

Croatia (Luka Modric)


Croatia’s captain featured heavily over the international break, battling hard for his country against Azerbaijan and then Hungary. He linked play wonderfully in a 2-1 win versus the Azerbaijanis, bringing teammates into play and displaying an exquisite array of passing.

However, Luka Modric was unable to prevent his side from suffering a shock loss in Budapest, as the Croats surrendered an early lead to lose 2-1. 

France (Raphael Varane)

Raphael Varane

Raphael Varane took his tally of international goals up to four as France netted eight times over the course of their two fixtures.

It was in their 4-1 success against Moldova that Varane got his name on the scoresheet, heading in Antoine Griezmann’s near-post delivery. Though he didn’t score in the 4-0 win over Iceland later in the week, the centre-back looked assured in a solid display.

Brazil (Casemiro and Eder Militao)

Carlos Casemiro

Both men were chosen in Tite’s starting team for the friendly with Panama on Saturday. The Seleção underwhelmed in that encounter, drawing 1-1 with the Central Americans. Neither

Casemiro nor Eder Militao made a telling contribution in that frustrating match-up.

The latter was benched for the subsequent game against Czech Republic, though his Madrid teammate impressed with a dominant showing in midfield.

Wales (Gareth Bale)

Gareth Bale

Ryan Giggs experimented with his lineup in Wales’ friendly against Trinidad and Tobago, choosing to rest his talisman Bale so he could assess other options.

The 29-year-old led the frontline in the following match, the Dragons narrowly edging past Slovakia 1-0. He demonstrated valuable leadership and experience after being given the captain’s armband for the clash, also linking well with teammates in a fluid attacking unit.

Germany (Toni Kroos)


Toni Kroos remained on the bench for Germany’s 1-1 draw with Serbia last Wednesday before making a start in their thrilling 3-2 victory over the Netherlands.

He dictated the play from central midfield in Amsterdam, showcasing his exquisite skill-set in a fine display. With the experienced trio of Thomas Müller, Mats Hummels and Jerome Boateng no longer being considered for international duty, Kroos’ maturity was vital in leading his country past a spirited Dutch side.

Uruguay (Federico Valverde)


Federico Valverde was not involved in his nation’s 3-0 China Cup semi-final win over Uzbekistan, but full 90 minutes in the final as Uruguay dismissed Thailand 4-0.

He made his ninth international appearance as La Celeste left Guangxi with a trophy to show for their efforts, the 20-year-old looking confident in his midfield role.

Costa Rica (Keylor Navas)


The goalkeeper was once again given the captaincy for this set of internationals. However, he had a mixed time for his country, who stumbled to defeat in their away game in Guatemala, Keylor Navas unable to keep out Stefano Cincotta’s long-range effort for the hosts.

He fared far better in the following fixture, preventing Jamaica from scoring as Costa Rica secured a 1-0 triumph.

Zinedine Zidane’s men are back in action on Sunday 31 March when Huesca visit the Bernabeu.