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‘First Turkish player to…’ – Arda Guler confesses Real Madrid dream

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Photo via Getty Images

Carlo Ancelotti, over the years, has earned the reputation of being a manager who, while among the best in terms of man-management and bringing out the highest level from his players, does not like to shuffle his teams too much.

This often leads to injuries and on other occasions, some players not receiving enough minutes through the course of the season.

One of the players that has been the victim of this, this season for Real Madrid, is one of their 2023 summer signing, Arda Guler.

After ending Barcelona to his signing in the summer window, Guler was expected to be a part of the senior-team dynamics immediately, but an injury ruled him out for several months.

However, despite being fully fit since late November, the Turkish international has been awarded no more than 100 minutes in La Liga, and 60 in the Champions League.

He has received the joint-fewest minutes in the team among senior players who have played – as many as Eder Militao, who picked up an ACL injury on the first day of the season.

Dreaming about UCL win

Coming off a solid game against Real Sociedad where he scored the match-winner, though, Arda Guler spoke to KAFA Sports and admitted his big dream while at Real Madrid, saying, “I want to become the first Turkish player to win the Champions League.”

Guler has big ambitions while still at Madrid. (Photo by ANDER GILLENEA/AFP via Getty Images)

Guler also talked about his nickname in the Madrid dressing room, ‘Abi’. Explaining it, he said, “Everyone in the team calls me ‘Abi’ (older brother in Turkish). I am surprised when Modric says ‘Abi’ or something.”

He also name-checked David Alaba during this interview, opening up about their friendly relationship.

“Alaba grew up in a neighbourhood with a lot of Turkish people in Austria and is a fan of Galatasaray. He always jokes around with me saying, ‘You are from Fenerbahce, I am from Galatasaray’.”

Guler has been linked with an exit from Real Madrid on loan at the end of this season, though, with clubs like Napoli, among others seriously eyeing a move for him. The player, however, is only thinking about succeeding at the Santiago Bernabeu.

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid midfielder wants to follow in Kroos’ footsteps and retire at the club

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Photo by Yasser Bakhsh/Getty Images

Real Madrid midfielder Toni Kroos recently shared that he plans to retire after this season. Now, according to a report from MARCA (h/t Madrid Zone), it seems Luka Modric, another key player, might also be eyeing retirement in Madrid.

Modric, who is 39 years old, has an agreement in principle with Real Madrid to stay for one more season. However, with manager Carlo Ancelotti’s backing for both Modric and Kroos to stay, it has come down to the fact that only one will remain at the club.

Is Modric returning now? 

No, not yet. Like Kroos, Modric wants to finish his career at Real Madrid. If he wanted to retire, he would not have agreed to extend his contract.

It is to be noted that Modric is currently one of the top earners at Real Madrid, but his high salary did not align with his reduced playing time. 

Luka Modric wants to retire at Real Madrid. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Despite his wish to stay, the club was not initially keen on keeping him under such terms.

However, things have changed recently. The club is now considering renewing Modric’s contract due to several reasons. 

First, the midfielder is open to a pay cut and second, his positive influence on younger players like Arda Guler is valued. Lastly, his desire to retire as a Madrid player is a significant factor.

Interestingly, Modric has turned down tempting offers from Saudi Arabia and the MLS to stay with Real Madrid.

Throughout this season, the Croatian international has accepted his decreased playing time, although it was challenging for him given his competitive spirit and pride. 

His role might diminish further once Real Madrid find a replacement for Kroos next season, but for now, Modric will continue to be a prominent figure for the team.

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