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A battle of midfield masterminds in Riyadh

Real Madrid have possessed one of world football's best midfield tridents for the last decade in the form of Luka Modric, Casemiro and Toni Kroos.

The trio have played together for a number of years to great success but they are about to face another midfield maestro for the first time.

The first Clasico with Xavi Hernandez in the Barcelona dugout is fast approaching in the Supercopa de Espana where a battle of midfield masterminds will commence in Saudi Arabia.

Xavi himself was part of one of football's great midfield trios alongside Andres Iniesta and Sergio Busquets, winning everything in sight for a generation.

Busquets still holds a place in the Catalans' midfield, passing on a wealth of knowledge to his much younger teammates and now he has an old friend with him at the Camp Nou.

Xavi rarely played against this Los Blancos trio with the timing of their crossovers not quite aligned so Wednesday's Supercopa meeting should be a good match-up and an intriguing battle in the middle of the park.

The Spaniard had the upper hand over Real Madrid during his Barcelona playing days with 17 wins, 12 draws and 13 defeats in his 42 games against Los Blancos.

Madrid won the season's first meeting between the two sides in LaLiga Santander - a 2-1 win at Camp Nou - and are well clear of their rivals in the table but Barcelona have since sacked Ronald Koeman to appoint Xavi.

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