Real Madrid News
Ancelotti backs Real Madrid superstar to achieve greatness: “On his way to write history”
Speaking ahead of Real Madrid’s UEFA Champions League encounter against Liverpool at the Santiago Bernabeu, manager Carlo Ancelotti lavished praise on forward Vinicius Jr and backed him to ‘write history’ at the club.
Vinicius, over the past couple of years, has become one of the best forwards in Europe, and has emerged as a constant difference-maker for Real Madrid.
The Brazilian superstar was the man of the moment for Los Blancos against Liverpool in the first leg at Anfield, helping his team overturn a 2-0 deficit and win 5-2.
The winger was also in fine form this past weekend against RCD Espanyol, as Real Madrid secured a 3-1 victory at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Talking about the Brazilian and his last game, Ancelotti said: “Vinicius’ last game was perfect. He is focused on the pitch.”
The manager then went on to praise Vinicius and state that he is on the path to achieve greatness at Real Madrid, just like the likes of Casemiro, Karim Benzema, and Luka Modric.
“Vinicius is on his way to write Real Madrid’s history in the coming years, just as players like Casemiro, Kroos and Modric did,” Ancelotti added.
Ancelotti discusses Eden Hazard’s future, Benzema fitness
During the presser, the Real Madrid boss was also asked about the interesting revelation that Eden Hazard had made recently, claiming that the two did not speak with each other.
“Hazard was honest, we don’t talk much, that’s true. That’s not the most important thing, but respect, and that fits. He doesn’t play because there’s a lot of competition and because Vinícius brings us a lot,” the manager said.
When asked if the winger will still be at the club for next season, Ancelotti replied: “For next year I have the players that the club puts at my disposal.”
Meanwhile, the Real Madrid head coach also confirmed that his captain Karim Benzema was feeling fine after missing the Espanyol clash due to an ankle issue.
“Benzema is very excited and is in a great physical moment,” he said.
Commenting on the controversy between Benzema and France manager Didier Deschamps, Ancelotti added: “Regarding the Deschamps & Benzema case, this is more of a personal issue. Deschamps was my player and I respect him a lot. I don’t want to interfere.”
There were also words of praise for Eduardo Camavinga, with Ancelotti admitting that the youngster did make mistakes in the last game but is an ‘untouchable’ for the present and the future.
“Camavinga is very important. In the last game, he made obvious mistakes, but by playing so well he makes you forget all the bad things. Against Espanyol, he made a very big mistake, but then he played a very good game. He is untouchable now & in the future,” he said.
Ancelotti also spoke about Camavinga’s fellow midfielder, Toni Kroos, saying: “I think in the match against Espanyol Kroos did well. What happened is already completely forgotten, he is in a good moment physically. Sometimes the changes are to put on fresh legs.”
On how he is approaching the game against Liverpool after the 5-2 win at Anfield, Ancelotti said: “I think we haven’t talked much about that. We did a lot of good things. We are not going to do calculations.
“We are not going to propose a closed match but an open one, to play our best offensive football. And the players understand that. That’s why I think it’s going to be an open game.”
Source: Real Madrid Twitter
Real Madrid News
Rival watch: Barcelona midfielder essentially ruled out of Real Madrid clash
In what could be a real deal breaker for Real Madrid ahead of their Copa del Rey semi-final second leg clash against Barcelona, it has been revealed that as many as three Barça will be absent from the game while another key player remains a major doubt.
The list includes the likes of Pedri, Ousmane Dembele and Andreas Christensen. The trio is certain to miss the game through respective injuries while a certain Frenkie de Jong is more or less ruled out, as per Javi Miguel.
It must be remembered that Barcelona are heading into the second leg with a 1-0 advantage. But the absence of the aforementioned players means Madrid can work on exploiting the frailties.
Despite the absence of such big names, Barcelona did pretty well against Elche in their previous outing, coming out 4-0 victorious, with the goals coming from Robert Lewandowski, Ansu Fati and Ferran Torres.
With options lacking in midfield, Xavi decided to use the likes of Sergi Roberto and Eric Garcia along with Gavi in the heart of the lineup. In any way, they do have Sergio Busquets and Franck Kessie as backups if needed.
The defence, on the other hand, was perfectly guarded by Jordi Alba, Marcos Alonso, Ronald Araujo and Jules Kounde.
One can expect Xavi to once again interchange Araujo with Kounde on the right since the Uruguayan has been rather successful in minimizing the threat of Vinicius Jr.
As far as Madrid are concerned, they are sweating over the fitness of three key defenders, namely, Antonio Rudiger, Nacho, and Ferland Mendy. Between these three, the Frenchman is out for about a month while Rudiger and Nacho are expected to be back before the Clasico.
If there are no casualties against Real Valladolid, Madrid will have a perfect midfield and attack, with only Mariano Diaz missing.