After a run of three games without a win, Real Madrid secured a 3-1 comeback victory over RCD Espanyol at the Santiago Bernabeu earlier today.
Joselu opened the scoring for the Catalan club, but Los Blancos bounced back from the early setback as Vinicius Jr and Eder Militao scored in the first half. Marco Asensio then added a third in stoppage time to add more sheen to the scoreline.
The victory means that Real Madrid have now reduced the gap to league leaders Barcelona to six points, although it could rise to nine with the Blaugrana playing Athletic Club tomorrow.
Speaking after the game, manager Carlo Ancelotti acknowledged that it was a complicated game for his team, but insisted that the Merengues controlled the match well.
“Yes, especially since the beginning was not very spectacular, then we came back, we controlled well, it was a good game. We needed to win yes or yes, we won it, now the next one,” Ancelotti said.
The Italian tactician also commented on the performance of midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni, who had a mixed game as he was sloppy on the ball on several occasions. But Ancelotti defended the Frenchman, saying:
“He lost some balls but he’s very good. It wasn’t an easy game for him today. He prefers another type of game.”
With an important week coming up with matches against Liverpool and Barcelona, the Real Madrid manager said:
“The matches are all complicated, whatever the rival is. We must look at ourselves, we need the three points, a very important week begins, with the Champions League and Clásico.”
Real Madrid have a three-goal cushion over Liverpool heading into their UCL tie next week. But Ancelotti said that the tie can be tricky and his team cannot let their guard down.
“I hope we can prepare well for Wednesday’s game, which can have a lot of traps, and we have to avoid them,” he said.
On the team’s overall performance, Ancelotti added: “Today we did better in the face of a closed defense, we had more mobility in front, especially on the right, mobility was better. We scored three goals, the control was good.”
The manager was also seen chatting with the referee at half-time, and giving an insight into what he said to the official, he revealed:
“I didn’t understand it, it wasn’t an action of a promising attack. I didn’t understand it, but it’s okay. I don’t understand the yellow cards they give him, sometimes he protests, but his attitude has been exemplary, he scored a fantastic goal.”
Real Madrid maintain full confidence in Turkish starlet despite injury woes
Arda Guler’s Real Madrid stint has not gotten off to the start he would have hoped to have given the expectation that preceded the transfer.
Having joined in the summer after Real Madrid outbid their competition to win him over from Fenerbahce for a 20-million-euro fee, buzz was high as the winger was expected to slot into the team quite seamlessly, albeit on a rotational basis.
Unfortunately for the 18-year-old, he has been constantly marred by injuries since completing the move.
Reports have stated that after Guler picked up his third injury since his move, Real Madrid have been concerned and want to take things slow with the player to ensure he is fit as soon as possible after an injury to his quadriceps this time.
The Turk is yet to make his competitive debut for the club, and Real Madrid even sacked their medical chief in November, in light of their injury crises since the beginning of the season.
No loan deal for Guler
However, according to Fabrizio Romano in a recent YouTube video, he states that Madrid maintain full trust and patience in the youngster.
Despite his bad luck with injuries, the latest of which he is scheduled to return from after Christmas, the Galacticos have no intention of loaning out Guler to Turkish clubs despite lots of speculation of them doing so of late.
Romano states that Madrid remain firm on not shaking things up too much with the squad, and they want to keep their roster stable, including Arda Guler.
They want to extend their full support and protection to the player as he aims to return to full fitness and finally make his bow for Madrid either by the end of this month or in 2024.