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Ancelotti talks Rodrygo, Bellingham, Vazquez, Tchouameni, Nacho after Alaves 0-1 Real Madrid

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Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

Real Madrid pulled off a stunning win over Deportivo Alaves late on Thursday night to take three much-needed points ahead of Christmas. The win brings Los Blancos back on level terms with Girona and to the position of joint leaders heading into the new year.

Lucas Vazquez was the hero on the night for the men in white, striking gold in the 92nd minute to steal the win. What makes the win more impressive is the fact that Real Madrid pulled off the result by playing a man down for over 35 minutes.

Speaking to the media after his team’s win at Estadio de Mendizorroza, Carlo Ancelotti expressed his admiration of the team’s mentality to press for a win being a man down.

“We are very satisfied with tonight because it has been difficult and complicated, but thanks to the enormous commitment of the team we have won. Playing with ten for more than half an hour has been a huge effort. That’s why we deserved to win in the end.”

“The game has been complicated and with one less everyone thought it could be the day it was punctured. This equipment has unknown energy. We have endured well, played well and defended well with ten and in the end, we have had a prize,” he added.

Providing an update on Rodrygo’s fitness and his thoughts on Vazquez’s last-gasp winner, the coach said,

“Rodrygo is a little tired and Lucas Vázquez scored today and gave an assist against Villarreal. He is dangerous within the area.”

Giving his two cents on the recent ruling in favour of the European Super League, Ancelotti extended support to the new competition and enlisted some of its biggest positives.

“It has been important for all football and clubs. There are clubs that are not so convinced, but the fact that there is not only a monopoly that manages our world I think will be positive for all clubs and players.”

“It can improve the international calendar, which is what worries us at the moment. Time will tell that it is positive. I am convinced that it will be positive for everyone. I haven’t had time to look at the format, but this decision is going to be very good for football,” he added.

The manager was then asked about Aurelien Tchouameni who was forced to play at centre-back after captain Nacho’s red card on the night.

“He will get angry, but he’s a spectacular centre-back. He plays very well, he takes the ball out from behind like few others and tactically he is very good. He is lucky that he can play in two positions: as a pivot and as a centre-back,” Ancelotti said about the French midfielder.

Bellingham cut a frustrated figure at times against Alaves and his impulsive reaction even earned him a booking on the night. The manager, however, backed the player and insisted that he did not have to change anything.

“It has not been a protest. It has been a foul in which they have not taken out a card. He doesn’t have to change his attitude because that’s how he has scored 14 goals. He doesn’t have to change anything he does in the field because he’s making it spectacular.”

Speaking about the pivotal point of the game, Nacho’s red card, the Italian gaffer said: “The referee has seen it as yellow and the VAR as red. That’s the problem with football, that the referee sees the play in one way and the VAR in another.”

Finally, the Real Madrid manager’s press conference ended with a comment on Girona who dropped two points against Real Betis and the implication on the title race.

“Tying with Betis is not so easy and Girona has shown all the quality it has shown throughout the season. I think he’s going to fight until the end because he doesn’t have a European competition.”

“I also think that Barcelona and Atlético will be there until the end. And watch out for Bilbao, who is playing very well too,” he added.

Source: Real Madrid website

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Real Madrid News

‘Me and Zizou…’ – Toni Kroos teases iconic team-up for Real Madrid Legends team

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Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos has said that during a recent training session, he bumped into Raul, a former striker and current Castilla manager, who confessed to him that he did not like his decision to retire from the game.

The midfielder added that he would now be interested in playing the Legends match where the likes of Zinedine Zidane, Roberto Carlos and Raul participate. 

The veteran admitted that playing alongside these legends one day would be quite exciting.

“When I left the training yesterday, Raul was outside. He told me that he did not like the decision at first but found something positive because now I’m definitely playing this legends game with him,” said Kroos on his podcast

“He said I had to be there. Me and Zizou playing behind him, Figo on the right, and RC3 (Roberto Carlos) at the back. That could be funny,” he added.

Life after Toni Kroos

Toni Kroos would love to play with Zinedine Zidane. (Photo credit: GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

During the early hours of Tuesday, May 21, Kroos announced that he would retire from professional football after the upcoming European Championship in his home country.

As a result, Real Madrid now have to work on an alternate strategy to plan life beyond Kroos. As suggested before, the Los Blancos are of the idea that at present, there is no one in the market who can fill the void.

On the other hand, though, Dani Ceballos’ chances of staying have now increased. At the same time, there are reports that Joshua Kimmich is being monitored, but nothing seems concrete yet.

For now, Real Madrid are largely expected to rely on the current roster as the likes of Aurelien Tchouameni, Eduardo Camavinga, Federico Valverde and even Jude Bellingham are more than capable of occupying Kroos’ position.

If even that does not work out, the team from the Spanish capital can look into the youth system to rope in a capable alternative.

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