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Melilla v Real Madrid: Copa del Rey campaign begins with Solari at helm

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News | 31/10/2018 | Javier García

The Whites head to the Álvarez Claro for an unprecedented encounter as they bid to take charge of this round-of-32 tie.
A game of firsts awaits in Melilla as Real Madrid prepare for their maiden competitive outing in the autonomous city. The side make their first visit to contest their 2018/19 Copa del Rey opener, a tie that will also see Santiago Solari take charge for the first time (7.30pm CET). 

Speaking in the build-up, Solari declared, "We're excited and are raring for the game to come around. My initial target is to win in Melilla". The Argentine tactician oversaw his first training session as Real Madrid's coach, before expressing the faith he has in his squad to the gathered media, "I've come in and found a group of champions and fighters who are hurting and want to turn things around". 

THIS WILL BE REAL MADRID'S FIRST COMPETITIVE FIXTURE IN MELILLA.

The Álvarez Claro is set to host Real Madrid's Copa del Rey curtain-raiser. The Whites, who have won the competition 19 times, begin the quest for glory in this, one of the four fronts they're competing in this term. The first step involves securing a win in Melilla that will hand the side an advantage in a last-32 tie which will be concluded in the first week of December at the Bernabéu.

Expectation levels
Real Madrid's visit has generated much expectation in Melilla. The Whites' opponents have reached this stage after having seen off Yeclano, Tudelano and Ontinyent in the previous rounds. Luis Carrión's men are enjoying an excellent season and, in addition to their fine Copa del Rey run, they currently lie in second spot in group 4 of Segunda División B and are unbeaten on their own patch.

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