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Ancelotti talks Mbappe, Tchouameni, Modric, Rodrygo, Guler ahead of Rayo Vallecano vs Real Madrid



Photo by OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid will be taking on Rayo Vallecano away at Estadio de Vallecas tomorrow, hoping to strengthen their grip atop the La Liga table.

Rayo had managed to hold Real Madrid to a goalless draw earlier this season and the Merengues will be eager to avoid a repeat of that result and get a victory to maintain or extend their lead over Girona in the table.

Ahead of the game, manager Carlo Ancelotti addressed the media, discussing various topics, including the biggest one – that of Kylian Mbappe.

With Mbappe confirmed to leave PSG, all signs indicate he will be headed for Real Madrid. And when asked about it, Ancelotti opted to remain coy, saying:

“I see and hear everything but nothing else. I understand that it’s the topic of the day for you but not for us.”

When further probed about the speculations, he added: “We have prepared for tomorrow’s game and that’s what we have talked about, not about anything else. I’d like to work on this season, there’s a long time to go before next season.”

On being asked if he was worried about the Mbappe speculations, he said: “If I’m worried about Mbappe, do you see me worried? I think it’s going to be the same for the next few press conferences, I’m not worried”.

On facing Rayo Vallecano away at the Vallecas and the challenges that will bring, the Real Madrid boss remarked: “Vallecas is always complicated. The opponent needs points and they have changed coach this week and so they have extra motivation.”

Ancelotti then praised the job that Aurelien Tchouameni has done as an emergency centre-back for Real Madrid this season, saying:

“When the centre-backs return, Tchouaméni’s role is not as a centre-back. His role is as a pivot, which is why we signed him. He can contribute as a centre-back and he is getting used to a new role. It means he is very, very intelligent”.

Ancelotti also commented on the situation of Luka Modric, who has barely featured in recent matches, praising the veteran for his professionalism.

“This isue of Modric I’ve talked a lot with you. With him once and that’s enough. For a player who is used to playing, it’s always harder for him to sit on the bench than others, I understand that,” he remarked.

“Luka’s behaviour is that of a professional and of a player who continues to fight to be on the pitch.

“In the dressing room, he continues to contribute the same as when he was playing more. He is very respected and is an example because every day he is ready to train and play at his best, so he continues to be a reference for the squad.”

On Modric’s future, with his contract expiring in the summer, Ancelotti said: “What the club has done with the last legends is to let them decide. I spoke to Luka about it a month ago and everything is quite clear between the two of us”.

Ancelotti also highlighted Rodrygo in his press conference for the Brazilian’s defensive work off the ball after it was told to him that the Brazilian is the player that runs the most for Real Madrid.

“I value the defensive work of the forwards very much because as I have usually said the player who has the most quality is the one who runs the least but that is not the case with Rodrygo. His work has been very important in the last few games to keep a clean sheet,” he said.

On being asked about Arda Guler and his physical condition, Ancelotti replied: “Guler is fine and can play from the start because his physical level is good but he has to fight with the competition in the team but we have to be patient with him.”

Real Madrid now have an excellent squad, which could be further boosted by Kylian Mbappe’s potential addition in the summer. When asked if it will hurt the team’s balance or whether all good players can find a way to play together well, the manager said:

“Yes, I agree that good players can play together, but the important thing is to keep the balance. The most important thing is quality and balance. If you combine those two aspects well, it’s good.”

Source: Mundo Deportivo

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Real Madrid News

Official: Real Madrid announce starting lineup to face Real Betis



Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Real Madrid will sign off on their successful La Liga campaign today with a fixture against Real Betis at the Santiago Bernabeu.

The game, being seen as a final preparation for the UEFA Champions League final against Borussia Dortmund, sees manager Carlo Ancelotti field his strongest possible lineup.

All eyes will obviously be on the retiring Toni Kroos, who bids goodbye to the Bernabeu in what will be his final home game as a Real Madrid player.

The German international starts in the centre of the park alongside Federico Valverde, while Eduardo Camavinga slots in as the No. 6.

Meanwhile, Real Madrid captain, Nacho Fernandez, also starts in what could be his last game at the Bernabeu as well.

Nacho pairs up with Antonio Rudiger in defence, flanked by the full-back pairing of Dani Carvajal and Ferland Mendy. Thibaut Courtois starts in goal ahead of Andriy Lunin and Kepa Arrizabalaga.

Up front, Vinicius Jr. starts in attack, partnering up with Rodrygo Goes. Top scorer Jude Bellingham occupies the attacking midfield role for Real Madrid.

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