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Ancelotti talks Benzema, Camavinga, Militao, Ronaldo, Xavi ahead of Real Madrid vs Barcelona

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Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images

Real Madrid play one of their most important matches of the 2022/23 campaign on Sunday as they take on bitter rivals Barcelona in the Spanish Super Cup final in Riyadh.

Los Blancos have been well below their best since the restart of the season after the World Cup. And it was again visible during the semi-final encounter against Valencia, with Carlo Ancelotti’s side relying on penalty shootouts to progress to the final.

With a challenge against the La Liga leaders now awaiting, the Merengues cannot afford a slip-up, especially with questions already being raised over the team’s recent run of form and results.

On the eve of the blockbuster El Clasico final, manager Ancelotti attended his customary press conference and shared his thoughts going into the match on Sunday.

On the importance of winning the Spanish Super Cup: “All titles are important to have confidence and have a good atmosphere in the locker room.”

On Barcelona’s need to win the trophy: “We have the same need to win as they do. We fight every day to get to this moment and the team is motivated as always. They are comfortable and used to this kind of pressure and we are very confident.”

On the possibility of winning the sextet: “This thought is not in our head. Our thought is to fight in all competitions and that’s it. I think that’s what we have to do and not think about something that is really very complicated and very difficult.”

On whether Real Madrid have a ‘full belly’ with trophies: “It’s not true. We are talking about players who have not won last year. They have started winning in 2013 and they will never have a full belly because they have a mental quality that is very high. Also because we are in a very demanding club and it doesn’t allow you to have a full belly.”

On the state of the pitch: “I liked the state of the pitch the other day. We got into an issue that has led to a lot of messes and I don’t want to say what I wanted to say. It’s better grass than at home, that’s for sure.”

On the El Clasico final: “You have to do a lot of things right to beat FC Barcelona. It’s not just thinking that intensity is the key. The key is to play a complete game in all aspects.”

On Karim Benzema: “Benzema is back. This gives us a lot of confidence for the next games. He is too important for us. The team has coped well with his absence and he’s going to help us a lot now.”

On the injuries: “When we have injuries it worries us a bit, but besides the two who have stayed in Madrid, only Lucas Vázquez will not be able to play. The rest should be fine.”

On Eder Militao and Eduardo Camavinga: “Camavinga has recovered well and Militao trained without problems. It’s hard to recover from extra time but we’ll be fine for the game.”

On new signings: “We don’t need any more players in this market.”

On Cristiano Ronaldo: “Yesterday we saw Cristiano and he is happy, motivated and likes this new adventure and the decision he has made.”

On the areas to improve: “There are things we have to improve in defence. The block against Valencia was good but we had a positional problem. Hopefully, it won’t happen again.”

On Xavi’s comments that he would be ‘killed’ if he doesn’t win titles: “Winning is the burden of coaches. Xavi knows it well.”

Source: Real Madrid Twitter

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Real Madrid News

Revealed: The blueprint behind Real Madrid’s €1 Billion revenue ambition

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Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

As one of football’s biggest and most successful institutions, Real Madrid enjoy serious perks on the economic front. After all, they cater to a worldwide audience and thus see their remunerations come in from across borders.

The arrival of Kylian Mbappe will only serve to further grow Los Blancos’ fanbase, and with a generational squad set to dominate world football for the years to come, Florentino Perez sees a special marketing opportunity.

According to reports from SPORT, Real Madrid have thus set themselves a target to hit €1 billion in revenue and have drawn up a concrete plan for the same.

The player aspect

As a football institution, one of the most significant aspects of remuneration is the team’s direct winnings in terms of prize money. Having won the Champions League last season and with Mbappe coming in, the team is in safe hands.

Moreover, the average age of Real Madrid’s squad is just 27.1 years implies that the team has significant longevity with little change expected in personnel.

The second important aspect that the club hopes to count on is the crowd-pulling factor that such young players exert on the new generation.

Kylian Mbappe will be the face of Real Madrid’s marketing campaign. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images)

Real Madrid already boast 410.9 million followers on social media and have added 48.4 million just last year. Mbappe, who himself has 132 million followers across Instagram and X, will further amplify that number next season and add to the club’s followers.

It is thus clear that the Frenchman will become the face of the club and the centre for all marketing operations of Real Madrid plan.

The road to €1 billion is thus not complicated, although Perez must be wary that Mbappe is picky with the brands he endorses. Further, the distribution of image rights will be a major factor to finalise.

The new Bernabeu

Having undergone extensive renovation, the New Santiago Bernabeu will take over as the world’s highest-grossing football stadium next season and play a massive role in boosting Real Madrid’s collections. The partnership with Sixth Street and Legends will also be crucial.

Furthermore, the new venue will also serve as a massive economy generator through miscellaneous events. Apart from Taylor Swift, the club also has agreements with Karol G, Aitana, Lola Indigo and La Velada del Ano de Ibai Llanos for exclusive events.

Real Madrid plan to add extra revenue from exclusive events at Santiago Bernabeu. (Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images)

Needless to say, such events will serve significantly to boost the income and near the elusive €1 billion mark.

Cost-cutting

The final, yet critical manoeuvre Perez plans is to cut the costs on the wage front with a salary reduction of €0% already being made in both 2019-20 and 2020-21. That was, in fact, one of the major reasons Real Madrid stayed on their feet in the pandemic.

Player sales is another element where the men in white have worked their plan, getting rid of the older players while their market value was still high and reinvesting the cash into younger talents who can serve for at least the next decade.

The club recorded north of €800 million in income last year and the €1 billion mark is not too far off. Needless to say, the coming year could thus be special for the men in white.

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