GK – David De Gea
While reports suggest that negotiations may have hit an impasse, Manchester United’s No.1 looks set to take over from Iker Casillas in between the Santiago Bernabeu posts. The 24-year-old certainly has huge gloves to fill, but there are currently few better than the former Atletico Madrid star right now.
RB – Danilo Luiz da Silva
The Brazil defender completed his transfer from Porto – in a £23m deal – at the end of March and could be thrown into Benitez’s first-team instantly next season.
CB – Raphael Varane
Jose Mourinho is said to be an admirer of the France international and was linked with a move for the defender in the January window. However, with his fine performances last season, combined with Sergio Ramos seemingly wanting out of the Spanish capital, Varane could finally be set to become first-choice at centre-back.
CB – Pepe
This could be a tricky position for Rafael Benitez, and one the former Liverpool boss may be addressing this summer. With reports suggesting Sergio Ramos is keen on a move to Old Trafford, Pepe may become a regular alongside Varane. However, while the Portugal international remains an intimidating presence in defence, he has certainly past his peak.
LB – Marcelo Vieira
The Brazil defender may no longer be guaranteed a starting place under Benitez, but with his only real threat coming from Fabio Coentrao, Marcelo could remain first-choice – unless Benitez enters the transfer market for a new left-back.