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Ancelotti talks Benzema, Valverde, Rodrygo, Camavinga ahead of Real Madrid vs Girona



Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Coming off the back of their first defeat of the season, Real Madrid will be more determined than ever to return to winning ways when they take on Girona on Sunday. After all, Los Blancos cannot afford to drop points in the league with Barcelona sitting close behind.

Their opponents on the night are in the midst of a disastrous season so far. In 11 La Liga games, Michel’s side have only won two, drawing three games and losing six. The men in white will fancy their chances of a dominant win on the night but will have to be wary of Girona’s relatively strong midfield.

Carlo Ancelotti spoke to the press before his team’s game at Santiago Bernabeu. Here are the snippets from his media interaction.

On the team’s sensations ahead of the next game: “We are motivated ahead of tomorrow’s game. We want to win and play a good game.”

On players returning from injuries: “Modrić, Valverde, Ceballos and Mariano are BACK tomorrow.”

On Karim Benzema: “Karim Benzema will not play tomorrow.”

On whether Rodrygo would be involved in the game: “Rodrygo will play tomorrow.”

On whether Federico Valverde was the best midfielder in the world: “I don’t know, surely one of the best. He’s a surprise for everyone.”

On Benzema’s recovery: “Karim Benzema trained yesterday but he didn’t feel well after the session. He’s not injured but he’s not 100% recovered. He underwent tests yesterday and is physically fine. However, his sensations are not good so we won’t risk him. We respect it.”

On the team’s transfer strategy for the January window: “We are not thinking about buying new players in the winter market. This will be the squad until the end of the season.”

On Miguel Gutierrez: “He played some games last season because Mendy and Marcelo were injured. He did well. We are evaluating him ahead of the future. If he does well he will return.”

On Eduardo Camavinga: “We are very happy to have Camavinga for our future. He’s very young. There are not many youngsters with his qualities in Europe right now.”

On the vacant non-EU spots: “Militao and Rodrygo got Spanish citizenship so we have more non-EU spots now.”

Source: Real Madrid Twitter

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid, Barcelona, Liverpool monitoring 19-year-old Bundesliga wonderkid – Romano



Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

According to Fabrizio Romano, Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Liverpool are all monitoring Bayer Leverkusen and Germany wonderkid Florian Wirtz.

After recovering from his ACL injury, the teenage sensation has been slowly working his way back to his best form. So far this term, Wirtz has managed to rack up a tally of two goals and six assists from 13 matches in all competitions.

The 19-year-old’s talent and potential have never been in question and hence it does not come as a surprise that elite clubs such as Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Liverpool are all keeping tabs on the German international.

A versatile attacking midfielder, Wirtz is capable of playing anywhere in the final third of the pitch and backs up with top-notch end product. Be it as a false-nine or in a more withdrawn role, the youngster has excelled for Bayer Leverkusen, catching the attention of top teams.

Real Madrid, for their part, are also understood to be among Wirtz’s admirers. Given the situation surrounding Karim Benzema’s fitness and the lack of backup at the top, the youngster could be an option, as he has shown potential while operating through the middle.

But Barcelona also have a strong interest in the teenager with reports even suggesting that they have already made contact with his father to enquire about his situation.

At the same time, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is understood to be a huge admirer of his fellow German and with Roberto Firmino on his way out, Wirtz could be lined up as a possible replacement.

However, Romano adds that the expectation is that Wirtz could stay at Bayer Leverkusen for one more year and depart Germany once the UEFA Euro 2024 is out of the way.

For now, there have been talks or negotiations with any clubs, but Real Madrid, Barcelona and Liverpool are all tracking Wirtz and his progress in Germany.

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