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Carlo Ancelotti talks Courtois, Bellingham & Bayern Munich ahead of Real Madrid – Cadiz

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Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images

Real Madrid are set to take on Cadiz tomorrow afternoon knowing they have a chance to seal the league title.

However, with Real Madrid also slated to take on Bayern Munich in midweek, coach Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed he will ring in a few changes.

Ancelotti also confirmed the return of Thibaut Courtois, who is poised for a start against Cadiz tomorrow.

Ancelotti on team selection

“Courtois is fine. Tomorrow he will play after a long time. It’s good news that he’s back, just like Militao. He can contribute, he’s fine, he’s very excited. We’re delighted that he’s back,” Ancelotti confirmed in the pre-match presser.

The Real Madrid coach added that Andriy Lunin will take on Bayern Munich in midweek, knowing he cannot risk Courtois’ fitness.

“The final we have in mind is Wednesday against Bayern, where Lunin will play. Then, we’ll see,” he said.

Ancelotti went on to address a few more burning questions in regard to Real Madrid’s team selection vs Cadiz and Bayern.

“I’m not talking about individualities. The team, in my opinion, was too passive against Bayern. We have to be more active. Militão will play tomorrow to pick up the pace,” Ancelotti said. “Arda Guler is also going to be the starter.”

Courtois is all set to start vs Cadiz (Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images)

Talking about variations in the Real Madrid frontline, the coach added, “We put Rodrygo on the left and Vinicius on the right. Rodrygo scored against City and Vinicius against Bayern. It went very well, we have to adjust things. In general, in the defensive aspect, against Bayern, we have to improve.”

“Placing Rodrygo on the left wing is offensive, not defensive. It was only to try to create more damage to the rival defense. It is not a definitive decision, it can change. He is effective in all the positions in which I put him. To He doesn’t change much,” he further added.

Ancelotti also offered an update on the fitness of Jude Bellingham, deeming him fully fit heading into the Cadiz encounter.

“Bellingham simply had an intestinal virus that did not give him the chance to recover 100% against Bayern. Now he is very well, he will do very well as he always has,” he said.

Speaking of midfielders, the Italian tactician was asked about the future of Toni Kroos. Ancelotti, though, remained coy as ever, adding, ” I’ll let him make the best decision for him.”

Ancelotti on the team, title race & season overall

Real Madrid can win the league title this weekend if they can secure a win over Cadiz and Barcelona fail to win against Girona.

Ancelotti, though, remains pragmatic as ever. “The objective is very clear: add three points to get closer to winning this competition,” he said when asked about the title race.

“We only think about fulfilling our objective against a team that is fighting to avoid relegation, that arrives at the Bernabéu with desire and enthusiasm,” he added.

When asked whether Real Madrid will go to Cibeles if they win the league title, Ancelotti responded: “No, we haven’t thought anything because we haven’t won anything yet. We will think about the celebrations the day we are mathematically sure. Still, we are not. The goal is the three points.”

Stoic and pragmatic as ever (Photo by Florencia Tan Jun/Getty Images)

Ancelotti was also asked about Real Madrid’s domestic season, with Los Blancos losing only twice in the league.

“It has never happened to me to have only two defeats. We want to continue with this streak. The squad has done very well, with a lot of commitment. Everyone has contributed a lot, from those who have played the most to those who have played the least,” he said.

The Real Madrid coach went on to describe the team’s mentality this season. He was also asked to compare Real Madrid’s current situation to that of 2022.

“It is difficult to compare one squad with another. I see in this squad an extraordinary collective commitment,” he said.

“We are aware that it is different. When we played against Espanyol, it was in our hands, now it is not. We are missing four points. This is what we have in mind, it is the reason why we do not want to talk about celebration,” the Italian added.

Finally, Ancelotti dived deep into the details of Courtois’ injury and how it compares to an injury of a defender.

“The injury is similar, but the readings are different. Defenders have different circumstances than a goalkeepers. One can be adapted before and another after. On a physical level, they are fine, they have been medically discharged. Then we have to evaluate the situations,” Ancelotti concluded.

Source: Diario AS

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Features

Real Madrid’s best lineup next season with Kroos retiring, Mbappe and Endrick joining

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Photo by MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP via Getty Images

It is set up to be a transformative summer for Real Madrid. After the UEFA Champions League final has concluded and the grand showdown finally has a victor, the Merengues are expected to undergo a squad revamp.

Indeed, the Santiago Bernabeu is preparing to welcome several high-profile signings, while also bidding farewell to some beloved Madrid legends.

Considering the potential arrivals of Kylian Mbappe and Endrick, as well as Toni Kroos’ recent retirement, here is how Real Madrid could shape up next season:

Goalkeeper

Having made a long-awaited return from injury, Thibaut Courtois is anticipated to guard Real Madrid’s goal next season once more.

The Belgian goalie has already started featuring in the starting XI and is expected to play against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League final, too.

As such, his place for next season is hardly in doubt. However, unlike previous seasons, he will face much fiercer competition from Andriy Lunin, who has enjoyed a stellar campaign.

Defence

Fortifications in the defensive line remain high on Real Madrid’s priority list in the upcoming summer transfer window. However, even with the given options the Royal Whites boast assurance and grit in their back-line.

The likely occupants on the flanks would be Dani Carvajal and Ferland Mendy, who have both produced great exhibitions throughout the campaign.

Ferland Mendy has the full trust of Carlo Ancelotti. (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images)

Carvajal is known to punish defensive lines and on the defensive end, his anticipation of forwards has been equally appreciable.

Meanwhile, Mendy’s resurgence this season has earned him immense faith from the coaching staff, as his defensive aptitude continues to set him apart.

In the centre-back positions, Real Madrid are expected to rely on the dependable figures of Antonio Rudiger and Eder Militao.

Real Madrid consider Rudiger to be indispensable owing to his front-footed style and the important role he has had to play amidst the injury crisis. Similarly, Militao is valued by the team as he proceeds to regain match fitness after recovering from a long-term injury.

Midfield

The void of Toni Kroos in midfield will compel coach Carlo Ancelotti and co. to
reconsider their midfield strategy.

Real Madrid will be unable to count on Kroos next season. (Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images)

Thankfully for Real Madrid, their succession stage had begun a while ago and they have ample options to trust in the center of the park.

With Aurelien Tchouameni protecting the base of midfield, Real Madrid will possess security and deep progression.

Ahead, occupying the interior midfield positions, Fede Valverde and Eduardo Camavinga are well-suited to provide a combination of energy off the ball and threat in possession.

And to put the cherry on top, Jude Bellingham’s place as the number 10 behind the two strikers would certify his status as a pivotal playmaker and scorer in the team’s setup.

However, he is adept at making third-man runs and connecting the midfield with the offence and could play deeper to not only make up for Kroos’ absence but also facilitate more options up front.

Attack

Real Madrid’s offensive department is where the largest reform is expected to take place.

Kylian Mbappe’s goalscoring instincts need little introduction by now and he is thus anticipated to be fielded as the striker.

Vinicius Jr. is expected to take up the position as a secondary striker drifting from the left, something he has become quite accustomed to this season.

Endrick will have to battle for a starting spot. (Photo by Alexandre Schneider/Getty Images)

It is worth noting that Endrick could also play a part by either replacing Vinicius off the bench and playing off Mbappe.

It remains to be seen how many men forward Ancelotti will commit to but the presence of Mbappe and Vinicius seems set in stone, given their huge profiles and status in world football. How the manager uses Rodrygo Goes will be interesting to see as well.

All in all, considering Ancelotti’s proficiency in profiling players, Madrid fans can expect to see these stars play in favourable environments.

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