Ahead of Real Madrid’s home game against Real Sociedad on Sunday, manager Carlo Ancelotti spoke to the press, saying that none of the players who went for international duties have come back injured. In fact, he revealed that everyone is ready to play.
While speaking to the media, Ancelotti shed light on several aspects, including Luka Modric’s role, Jude Bellingham’s adaptation and injury updates regarding Vinicius Jr, Dani Ceballos and Ferland Mendy.
At first, though, he was asked about former Real Madrid player Takefusa Kubo, about whom he said,
“Kubo is doing very well, he is making a lot of progress. But Real Sociedad is a complete team, which plays very good football. It is the team in general that we have to look at,” the manager was quoted by Mundo Deportivo.
Modric will gain prominence
Modric has started just one league game this season and has come from the bench in three of them. This statistic is enough to warrant the fact that the veteran midfielder is going to play a secondary role this season.
“When he renewed, we were all delighted. His role has changed because at the beginning he has only started one game, but now he will have more prominence and will continue to be important.
“I have discussed this issue with him. He has had to endure a little longer than he expected. normal now that I have given prominence to young people. This squad has a lot of competition and a lot of quality.
“I don’t need to give Modric and Kroos minutes to see what they can contribute and will contribute this year, even if it is with fewer minutes because behind them there are extraordinary players,” explained the manager.
Bellingham is a true professional
On the subject of Bellingham, the manager spoke extensively, saying that the midfielder is very professional.
“Bellingham is evaluated by what he does on the field. He is doing well. He wasn’t well known because he played in the German league and didn’t have the role he had now.
“Now he has an important role in an important club. It doesn’t surprise me. He is a player who is very focused, very serious as a professional, he is not one who is going to lose his mind if someone speaks well of him.”
Upon asking how many goals he thinks will the midfielder score, “We have talked about this issue. What we have seen in Dortmund is that he has the ability to arrive at the opponent’s area on time and be dangerous. We talked about it in the preseason and he feels good there.
“He is a player who has a lot of continuity and a very important physique. I don’t know how many goals he can reach, but he helps us a lot in attacking play.”
The manager also said that the reason why Bellingham has so quickly adjusted to new life is because of his personality. “The player with personality suffers less than the others. The key is in personality rather than quality so that this shirt doesn’t weigh you down.”
Vinicius recovering well
Vinicius Jr was recently left out of the 12 nominees for the best men’s player and the manager revealed that the player was actually upset with it. “I saw him the other day and he was crying in the locker room and I told him what’s wrong with you. He’s been crying for three or four hours.”
While speaking about his return from injury, he added, “I don’t know the exact day. The reality is that he is recovering very well but we don’t have to force his recovery. The scar is fine. He is increasing his workload.
“Next week he will start doing some of the work with the team. I think that he will recover before the six weeks that they have said,” he said.
Ceballos available, but Mendy is not
In terms of injuries, the manager also said, “Ceballos will be [available] against Real [Sociedad], but Mendy will not. He has to continue with his plan. We have to get him in when he is 100% ready and I think he will be in the squad on Wednesday.”
When asked about all the internationals, he said, “They have returned well. Also with more desire and enthusiasm. They have scored goals, and they have played good games. They have all returned in good condition.”
“I can give you the lineup. They are ready to play. They have returned in condition to play. Tomorrow I am going to put the best team, because it is going to be an important match, against an important rival.
“I am going to rotate a little more compared to the first games. Many more players are going to be used from the beginning,” the manager added.
Raul, Castilla and recent scandal
Lastly, the manager was also asked about Castilla manager Raul and the recent scandal that has rocked the footballing world.
“Raúl is with us every day. It is quite normal to have communication with him, also because in this period we need many players from the quarry. Communication is daily. Today he was here because he had players called up for the match against Atletico B.”
About the scandal, he said, “I refer to the statement to the club. I have nothing to add on this subject.”
Real Madrid defender taken off with an injury against Las Palmas
There just does not appear to be any respite from injuries for Real Madrid.
Just when it appeared that they were close to having their full squad – barring the two long-term absentees – the Merengues have been struck down by fresh injuries this week.
Arda Guler, who was on the cusp of being named in the squad for the Las Palmas clash, injured himself in training on Tuesday.
And now, during the game against Las Palmas at the Santiago Bernabeu, Real Madrid have lost key defender David Alaba to an injury.
Close to the 40th-minute mark, Alaba went down on the ground clutching his leg and appeared to be in quite a bit of discomfort.
Soon enough, the medical staff arrived to take a look at the Austrian and seconds later he was off the pitch and straight towards the tunnel.
Lucas Vazquez came on to replace the injured Alaba, with Nacho Fernandez moving into the centre-back position alongside Antonio Rudiger.
Alaba’s injury leaves Carlo Ancelotti with just two fit centre-backs in Rudiger and Nacho, which is set to be a matter of great concern.
The hope will be that Alaba’s condition is nothing serious and that he is able to mount a quick recovery.