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Ancelotti talks Ronaldo, Bale, Gattuso, penalties ahead of Real Madrid vs Valencia

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Photo by JOSE JORDAN/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid will be aiming to bounce back to winning ways when they lock horns with Valencia in the semi-finals of the Spanish Super Cup in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Following the loss to Villarreal in La Liga this past weekend, it is imperative that Carlo Ancelotti & co. produce a strong reaction and progress to the finals of the Super Cup, where they would meet either Valencia or Barcelona.

Real Madrid are the current holders of the trophy, having won it last season and will look to successfully defend the title.

Ahead of the game against Gennaro Gattuso’s side, Ancelotti appeared in front of the press and discussed what it means for Real Madrid to win the Super Cup, along with several other topics.

On the Spanish Super Cup: “Titles are always important for this club. Last year it was a title that gave us confidence for the season. Hopefully, it can be the same in this Super Cup. We have to prepare well for tomorrow’s game and play well. Then we’ll try to go home with another title.”

On Real Madrid’s performances post-World Cup: “I think it was foreseeable that we wouldn’t be at our best at this stage of the season. The signs from training were good, I was surprised by the Villarreal game. We have to get back to doing things right; the defensive aspect wasn’t good.

“We have to work and show something different. We know how to defend much better. Tomorrow we have to apply ourselves, the defensive phase is important for us. Up front we have the quality we need.”

On not having any Spanish players in the lineup vs Villarreal: “I think it was a coincidence. I think the matrix of this club is Spanish, it’s clear. Madrid is a universal club, we have Spaniards, in the youth academy too. Madrid are the club that has produced the most players in the youth academy who play in La Liga.”

On whether the players are mentally burdened after the WC: “I don’t think it was too much of a mental burden. It could be that some people are affected emotionally, but we have to wait a bit to draw conclusions. We are hurt by Villarreal and I hope the team reacts tomorrow. It’s a very important test.

On Gennaro Gattuso: “We’ve had some great moments, we’ve won two Champions League titles. Memories forever. After that the relationship is not always good, we have had personal problems but I don’t want to talk about that.”

On the objective in the Spanish Super Cup: “We have to fight for every title, we think about winning everything. Now we will do everything we can to win the Super Cup. We don’t think about whether or not it’s an objective.”

On Gattuso as a manager: “A lot of coaches have come out of that Milan team. They don’t come to me now, but Seedorf, Pirlo, Gattuso, Nesta…maybe they have ‘learned’ something, an experience. Then each one puts his touch on the team. Gattuso’s teams have a very clear identity, they’re intense.”

On the team’s defensive problems: “I am convinced that we will see a compact, solid unit. The defensive aspect is not about quality, but about mentality and sacrifice.”

On whether physical problems led to defeat vs Villarreal: “It’s been years since we stopped doing very long physical programmes. There are a lot of games, not a lot of rest time. We haven’t scheduled any down time. We went down because we didn’t play well.”

On penalty shootouts: “We don’t train for penalties very much. It influences those who want to take them and those who don’t. Sometimes it’s hard to find five players who want to take them. The mental aspect is very complicated. It’s impossible to recreate the atmosphere of a penalty shoot-out in training”.

On playing in Saudi Arabia: “We are delighted to play the Super Cup here, because of the atmosphere we had last year.”

On Cristiano Ronaldo’s move to Al Nassr and Gareth Bale’s retirement: “Cristiano was a fantastic signing for Al-Nassr, we wish him all the best. The same goes for Bale, who retired yesterday. They will always be in the hearts of the Madridistas.”

Source: RFEF Official YouTube

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Real Madrid News

Ancelotti-favourite defender will leave Real Madrid if club signs 23-year-old ace

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Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

With Kylian Mbappe’s signing now a completed objective, Real Madrid turn to what was always considered the second most critical operation of this summer – Alphonso Davies.

The Canadian full-back has been on Los Blancos’ radar for a while now, but with his contract with Bayern Munich running until 2025, his signing is seen to be a tad bit more complicated.

The Bavarians’ firm stance that they wish to persist with the speedster, needless to say, has only made the objective more complicated for Los Blancos.

No room for three

Despite Bayern Munich’s repeated advances towards Davies in recent weeks, Real Madrid are firm that they will attempt to sign the player this summer.

In light of the Canadian full-back’s possible arrival, Cadena SER reveals that Ferland Mendy will almost certainly leave Real Madrid if Davies’ signing is pulled off.

Carlo Ancelotti is clear that he has no room for three left-backs in his squad. One of Fran Garcia and Mendy must thus leave the Spanish capital in such a scenario and the Frenchman is better placed on that front.

Ferland Mendy (L) could leave Real Madrid if Davies arrives.. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

Mendy’s current deal in Madrid runs out next year and the player has been informed that a decision over his future at the club will be taken shortly.

On track with Davies

The Spanish outlet also reveal that the Canadian speedster rejected an offer from Bayern Munich in recent hours and that his departure from the Bavarian capital is not ruled out.

Bayern Munich demand a sum of €50 million for the dynamic full-back. Real Madrid, however, have set a spending limit of €30 million for the youngster and will not exceed that sum in any scenario.

Vincent Kompany’s men thus have a critical decision to make, for allowing Davies to run down the final year on his deal may well back-fire as did the case of Kylian Mbappe with PSG.

Real Madrid, as it stands, appear to be in the driver’s seat.

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