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Real Madrid and Atletico were keen to sign in-form Barcelona star back in 2018

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Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Barcelona have been on an unbelievable defensive run this season in La Liga. In 21 games so far, the Catalans have just conceded seven goals and have equalled the league record for the least goals conceded at this stage in history.

What makes the statistic even more astounding is the fact that three of the goals were conceded in a single game against Real Madrid while one was an own goal by Jules Kounde. Factoring in the aforementioned information, the Blaugranas have only conceded three direct goals in a whopping 20 games.

Ronald Araujo is one of Xavi’s most trusted defenders in the setup. Since his promotion from the B team, the Uruguayan has gone on to become irreplaceable in the starting lineup and is the leader at the back.

According to reports from Mundo Deportivo, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid were both interested in the defender’s signing when he signed for Barcelona’s youth setup in 2018.

The 23-year-old, however, opted to move to Barcelona instead, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Araujo may not be the most positional, technically gifted, or aggressive centre-back in La Liga. Yet, his attributes coupled with his passion for the badge make him one of the league’s most feared defenders.

In the recent Clasicos, it has regularly been Araujo who has walled off Vinicius Junior from Real Madrid’s attack and weakened the Merengues’ in the final third. Credit where it is due, both the capital clubs indeed missed out on a generational signing in 2018.

The 23-year-old joined Barcelona B from Boston River in August 2018 and received a red card on debut for the first team against Sevilla in 2019. Since then, however, he has grown into a special player averaging over eight defensive actions per game.

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Atletico Madrid News

Ancelotti talks Courtois, Militao, Bellingham, VAR controversies ahead of Las Palmas vs Real Madrid

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Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

Coming off a highly controversial game against Almeria, Real Madrid will now travel to Gran Canaria to take on Las Palmas tomorrow as part of the early kick-off.

Carlo Ancelotti spoke about the clash tomorrow, starting off by confirming his goalkeeper for tomorrow, “Lunin will start tomorrow.”

He also added that Madrid were looking to get back to their usual level after back-to-back poor performances, one of which included elimination against Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Rey round of 16.

“We are motivated to return to our best level after 2 bad games.”

The Italian gaffer also commented on the biggest football story in the world today, which was Jurgen Klopp announcing his decision to leave Liverpool at the end of the season.

“It’s quite surprising, I understand. Working for a long time with the same club and players lowers your motivation a bit. He’s doing a fantastic job at Liverpool.”

And of course, Ancelotti also spoke about the leaked VAR audiovisual, some of which are highly controversial for all parties involved. Barcelona coach and players have also commented on the same, in light of the Negreira case.

“They have talked a lot. Everyone knows what has happened in the last 20 years in Spanish football. The Civil Guard is carrying out an investigations. That is the real problem of Spanish football.”

Luckily for the manager and fans, all injured players — minus the ACL trio of David Alaba, Eder Militao, and Thibaut Courtois — are available. Jude Bellingham is suspended, however.

“Everyone is available now after the recent period of injuries.”

“Making up for Bellingham’s absence tomorrow? Brahim and Joselu are available options. They were able to show themselves after I relied on them as substitutes,” he added.

And as far as Militao and Courtois are concerned, both of whom tore their ACL early in the season, Ancelotti suggested that they could make their return before the season ends.

“Courtois and Militão both have the option to play this season. The recovery process is going very well, they are training on an individual level. It is February and these types of injuries last 6-8 months, so I think they will recover before the end of the season.”

Source: Mundo Deportivo

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