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Ancelotti admits Chelsea made things difficult for Real Madrid: “Caused us problems”

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Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid pulled off a second consecutive 2-0 win over Chelsea on Tuesday night at Stamford Bridge, and in the process, guaranteed a spot in the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League.

It was a game of two halves indeed at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea were in the driving seat in the opening 45 minutes but could not pull a goal back for the lack of a spark in the final third. Real Madrid punished them for their poor finishing after the break, scoring two goals and putting the game to bed.

Carlo Ancelotti spoke to the media about a plethora of topics in his post-match press conference on the night. He began his interaction with an overview of the result and the game as a whole.

“We are delighted to play in another semi-final and will keep striving to reach the final. Reaching a semi-final is always a success because it allows you to dream of winning another Champions League and playing another final,” he said.

“It was difficult, which is what we expected because our opponents go all out to get through. Chelsea did very well in the first half and caused us a few problems, but we put in a very well-rounded second half, raised our game and moved the ball around better and had more dynamism.”

Standing strong in the final four of the UCL whilst also being in the final of the Copa de Rey is a dream situation for the manager. He highlighted the positives from his camp and the dynamics he considered for the matchups against Chelsea, saying:

“At this stage of the season, the team is doing very well. We have worked well over recent games and the team is highly motivated and focused. We are very solid and we concede very few goals.

“At half-time, we talked about fixing some defensive problems because we suffered a bit in the first half. I put Valverde on the left to help Camavinga because that’s where Kanté came in and James was also there.”

Forwards win games but solid defences win titles. The Italian manager stressed the importance of being solid at the back and how it served as a foundation for his side’s success.

“We can make a difference when there is a collective defensive commitment. That’s the basis for showing the quality we have. We have a lot of quality and being solid at the back helps us a lot,” Ancelotti said.

Rodrygo Goes scored both goals on the night and delivered the knockout punch to Frank Lampard’s team. Real Madrid’s manager was harsh with his criticism of the Brazilian for a relatively mixed performance overall but praised him for his effectiveness.

“His performance was not as good as others he’s had, but he was extremely effective. He made a difference and won the game with his two goals. We’re lucky to have young players with so much energy and quality at this club. It’s something to look forward to. They give us a lot of confidence for the future.”

Less than a minute before the half-time whistle, the hosts created a spectacular chance when a pinpoint cutback across the field deposited the ball at Marc Cucurella’s feet. What appeared to be a certain goal was only prevented by Thibaut Courtois’ heroics, on which Ancelotti said,

“The save to deny Cucurella was crucial because it could’ve changed the pattern of play in the second half. It was important because Chelsea played with a lot of intensity.”

On Tuesday, Ancelotti overtook the legendary Sir Alex Ferguson as the person with the most games in the history of the UEFA Champions League. When quizzed about the record, he did not hold back his happiness.

“It’s an honour for me to reach the figures of a great coach and a great person in Ferguson. I’m honoured and delighted to be alongside him.”

Source: Real Madrid website

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Real Madrid News

Video – Barcelona fans chant ‘Vinicius d*e’ ahead of their UCL clash

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Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images

In what is starting to become an alarmingly common occurrence, a set of Barcelona fans were spotted hurling abusive chants towards Real Madrid superstar Vinicius Jr.

Barça will be facing PSG in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinal today in less than an hour and in the lead-up to the game, a section of the Catalans’ supporters were seen chanting “Vinicius, die” on the streets.

It is not the first time this has happened, with Vinicius being constantly targeted by not only Barcelona fans but supporters of a number of other La Liga clubs.

In fact, last month, Barcelona fans were seen hurling the same chants before their UEFA Champions League Round of 16 tie against Napoli.

The same had happened outside Estadi Olimpic Lluis Companys in Montjuic prior to the Clasico in October last year.

Moreover, this past weekend, a Mallorca fan at Son Moix directed racist abuse towards Vinicius’ Real Madrid teammate, Aurelien Tchouameni.

It is shocking and embarrassing that these incidents continue to occur. It remains to be seen if any action is taken by the concerned authorities against those involved.

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