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Ancelotti talks Alaba, Rudiger, Ceballos, Asensio, Benzema following 1-0 loss vs Barcelona

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Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

Barcelona got the better of Real Madrid earlier today aided by a wonder strike from Raphinha. The Clasico may have been a friendly game, but there was no love lost between the two sides at Allegiant Arena.

Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti was interviewed by the media after his side’s second consecutive Clasico defeat and spoke about the shortcomings, situations of specific players and a lot more.

Here are the quotes from his post-match interview as relayed by the club’s official twitter handle.

Real Madrid’s defence saw players exchanging positions throughout the game, especially at left-back. The manager was first asked about the roles of David Alaba and Antonio Rudiger on the night, to which he replied,

“The idea was for Alaba and Rüdiger to change positions during the match and they will do so.”

Dani Ceballos and Marco Asensio have not been handed extensions and seem set to leave the club. Ancelotti took a neutral stance on their renewal.

“You have to ask Ceballos and Asensio if it is better for them to leave, and the club if they will be offered the renewal.”

He then confirmed Alaba’s role in the team for the coming season by saying,

“Alaba will only play left-back when necessary.”

Karim Benzema’s absence cost Los Blancos the game, for Real Madrid looked clueless in the final third against Barcelona. Ancelotti acknowledged that the Frenchman’s absence was a decisive factor.

“Benzema is back for the next game. He is the best player in the world, you can say that when he doesn’t play, we miss something.”

Ancelotti then indirectly hinted that the squad lacked depth in the forward positions by saying,

“We lacked quality in attack.”

Real Madrid faces Juventus in their next preseason game. Concerning that, the coach made a massive revelation.

“The team that will start vs Juventus, will start in the UEFA Super Cup.”

When asked about where the team fell short in El Clasico, Ancelotti pointed at two specific details- control and lack of finishing.

“I thought we defended well, but we missed something in the attack. We improved on the ball in the second half, more control.”

Finally, the manager spoke about starting a young midfield over the veteran trio and hinted that he will rely on youngsters more this season.

“It’s clear that when you bring in Casemiro, Kroos and Modrić it’s easier, but I wanted to use the youngsters. They have played very well defensively, but it was the first time they played together.”

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid closely following the progress of 19-year-old Brazilian centre-back

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Photo by ABDULMONAM EASSA/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid have made it a habit to identify and sign the best young talents from Brazil in recent times. The Merengues recently signed Endrick Felipe from Palmeiras, although the striker will join the club in 2024, once he turns 18 years old.

Now, according to journalist Bruno Andrade on UOL Esporte, Real Madrid have set their sights on 19-year-old Brazilian defender Robert Renan.

The teenage centre-half came through the ranks at Corinthians and went on to make 13 senior appearances for the Brazilian outfit. He left the club last month to sign for Russian giants Zenit St. Petersburg as part of the operation involving Yuri Alberto.

Renan is yet to make his debut for Zenit, but Real Madrid have had their eyes on the 19-year-old for a while now and have been closely following his progress and performances.

The teenage defender is currently a part of the Brazil U-20 team at the South American U-20 Championship in Colombia. And he has performed admirably in the tournament, featuring in each of his team’s five matches so far.

Renan’s performances in the U-20 Championship are said to have further piqued the interest of Real Madrid.

The report suggests that Los Blancos will continue keeping tabs on the young defender’s development at Zenit over the coming months.

With Nacho Fernandez’s contract expiring at the end of the season and Jesus Vallejo’s future uncertain as well, Real Madrid could use a defensive reinforcement in the summer to support Eder Militao, David Alaba and Antonio Rudiger.

Established players such as Josko Gvardiol have been linked with a move to the Bernabeu.

Renan, too, could be an option for Real Madrid in the summer. But, as things stand, the interest in the Brazilian is at a very nascent stage and the Merengues will continue to track his progress at Zenit, where his contract runs until 2028.

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