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‘No magic tomorrow’ – Ancelotti talks Haaland, Bellingham, Camavinga ahead of Man City vs Real Madrid



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Carlo Ancelotti has a huge task on his hands tomorrow as his Real Madrid side visit the Etihad Stadium to take on Manchester City for the second-leg of the Champions League quarter-finals.

Last season’s game in the heart of Manchester did not end well for them as Pep Guardiola’s side put four past them without conceding any.

Ancelotti will need to make sure that with the game standing at 3-3, his side makes no mistakes tomorrow and comes out on top as victors.

However, he has left the onus on the players as opposed to on him or Guardiola.

“Football always belongs to the players. The first leg witnessed a very competitive and enjoyable encounter. The players will be the champions tomorrow,” the Italian said during his presser, as quoted by MARCA.

On Bellingham, Haaland, Camavinga

Talking about Bellingham’s statement from earlier where he said he works ‘more for the team now’ which has made him lose his scoring form, Ancelotti said:

“I ask everyone to work for the team and that means commitment. Jude scored many goals, which no one expected. But in general I ask to work for the team, whether Vinicius, Rodrygo or him. We are the team that concedes the least goals.”

“The league and this reflects that the teamwork is very good. The more quality players work, the greater the commitment.”

Ancelotti also spoke more about Bellingham, calling him an all-round modern-day footballer.

“He is a very modern player, with great technical ability and intelligence. Being a midfielder, he can cover many spaces and I expect a great future for him, because he is only 20 years old. At this age he is already very mature and exciting.

The conversation quickly shifted to Erling Haaland, and whether Ancelotti was worried about keeping him quiet, even though Madrid have done a brilliant job of not conceding a single goal against him in the last three games.

“If we talk about individuals, he remains one of Manchester City’s most dangerous players. The fact that he did not score in the first leg is down to the defence, but he can be the best centre-forward in the world and will always be dangerous,” Ancelotti replied.

Ancelotti pretty much confirmed the presence of Eduardo Camavinga in the starting XI tomorrow, not that it was ever in doubt.

“Are you sure he will play? (Laughs). Yes, come on, I think so too.”

Camavinga will be key. (Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images)

On the matchup

Manchester City, as the defending champions and arguably the best team in the world, have been deemed as favourites heading into the second-leg. According to Ancelotti, though, Real Madrid fans have no reason to be anxious.

“I think Real Madrid fans are calm, they are not worried. In this competition, you don’t have to be the most anxious, you have to be the happiest. This team has always competed in the Champions League. I don’t see the confrontation as worrying, Rather, trust.”

As for the game, Ancelotti said there will be no surprises tomorrow, like the 2021/22, as the two sides know each other well by now.

“(Laughs) No, no. We know each other very well. Don’t worry, I won’t practice magic tomorrow.”

The four-time Champions League winning-coach was also asked whether Man City vs Madrid is the modern-day El Clasico, as some people have been calling it due to their exciting games over the last few seasons.

“There are many teams in Europe that are very strong and can win this competition, but it is true that we have faced each other a lot in recent years and they have always been very interesting matches. Tomorrow our opponent will be the same, the competition will be amazing.”

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid superstar reveals how advice from Brazil legend helped him improve



Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images

Even with all the excitement around Kylian Mbappe, it is Vinicius Junior, who continues to be Real Madrid’s biggest star.

In the past few years, the Brazilian has witnessed substantial growth, notably establishing himself as one of the best players in world football.

Vinicius’ rapid rise to prominence has been backed by numbers as well, with the forward racking up 82 goals and 75 assists in 262 competitive matches for Real Madrid.

Vinicius on receiving advice from Ronaldo

In a recent media interaction, Vinicius Junior, when talking about his success at Real Madrid, revealed that the forward constantly receives advice from his compatriot and former Real Madrid legend Ronaldo.

Vinicius particularly pointed out Ronaldo’s advice in 1v1 situations and how it has helped him improve in such scenarios.

“Ronaldo always calls me and gives me advice, he teaches me so many things. Since he told me that his favourite thing is a 1v1 vs a GK, I thought about it a lot and started working on it really hard,” Vinicius said (h/t Madrid Zone).

Ronaldo regularly speaks with Vinicius. (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

“Now, every time I’m in a 1v1 with a GK, I’m the calmest guy in the world. Ever since that conversation with Ronaldo, I stopped being afraid of making mistakes in a 1v1,” the forward added.

Vinicius has indeed witnessed an improvement in his 1v1 play in recent years, which has been reflected in his higher goalscoring numbers.

This season, the forward has netted 23 goals in all competitions while racking up 11 assists. His goalscoring prowess, coupled with his ability in 1v1 situations could prove to be critical as Real Madrid take on Borussia Dortmund in the UEFA Champions League final next month.

The Brazilian international, though, will be up against a challenging defensive duo of Mats Hummels and Nico Schlotterbeck, who have been able to keep the opposition attacks quiet this season.

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