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Reason why Ancelotti trusts Courtois over Lunin for the Champions League final – report

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Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP via Getty Images

Manu de Juan, writing for AS, has revealed that Carlo Ancelotti is confident in his decision about who will be Real Madrid’s goalkeeper for the UEFA Champions League final against Borussia Dortmund on June 1.

Amidst the ongoing debate between Thibaut Courtois and Andriy Lunin, the reporter states that Ancelotti is leaning towards the experienced Courtois, despite his recent return from a long injury layoff. 

Ancelotti had already hinted that Courtois would be the starter at Wembley, and Lunin’s recent performance, where he conceded four goals against Villarreal, has reinforced this choice.

Ancelotti already has a lineup ready

Real Madrid’s lineup for the Champions League final is set. Ancelotti has made up his mind, though he has not publicly confirmed this to maintain a competitive edge in the squad with two weeks left before the final. 

Ancelotti has, however, dropped hints in press conferences, stating, “Lunin has had a spectacular season and Courtois is returning to what he is, the best goalkeeper in the world.”

The decision is influenced by Courtois’s performances since his return from injuries. He has played three matches since coming back, and Madrid won all three, scoring 12 goals and conceding none. 

Carlo Ancelotti will pick Thibaut Courtois in the UEFA Champions League final. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

His role became more prominent over these games: against Cadiz and Granada, he wasn’t tested much, but he performed well when needed. 

The match against Alaves was a true test, where he faced ten shots and saved them all, including a crucial stop reminiscent of his save against Liverpool’s Sadio Mane in the 2022 final.

Lunin is good, but Courtois is better

While Lunin has been vital for Real Madrid at various points this season, especially in the Champions League, recent errors have hurt his chances of starting in the final. 

However, his form has dipped recently: conceding a goal to Bernardo Silva in the first minute of a match against City, making mistakes in El Clasico against Barcelona, and letting in a goal from Leroy Sane in Munich. 

In his latest opportunity against Villarreal, Lunin did not make any glaring mistakes, but Madrid still conceded four goals, adding to a total of nine goals in his last four games.

Given these factors, Ancelotti’s preference for Courtois is understandable. Despite his recent injury troubles, Courtois has proven he is back to top form, making crucial saves and maintaining clean sheets. 

This, combined with Lunin’s recent struggles, makes Courtois the more reliable choice for the high-stakes final against Borussia Dortmund.

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Real Madrid News

Spain midfielder credits Real Madrid assistant manager for career success

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Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Spain’s European Championship campaign so far has been one filled with revelations. From young Lamine Yamal and Nico Williams on the wings to the ever-so-solid midfield, La Roja have impressed across the park and have taken the tournament by storm.

One such player who has played a critical role for the team despite not being in many pundits’ squad for the tournament is Fabian Ruiz. The PSG midfielder has been sensational for Luis de la Fuente’s men so far, scoring once and providing one assist in two games.

Despite not having any direct links with Real Madrid, the Spanish midfielder interestingly credits Davide Ancelotti for his success and AS brings the story.

A chapter in Naples

Fabian Ruiz may have never played for Los Blancos in his career so far, but he crossed paths with the Ancelottis in Naples a few years ago.

Ruiz signed for the Italian club from Real Betis in 2018 for a fee of €30 million. At the time, he was not known widely and was just seen as another routine Spanish midfielder aspiring to make it big.

As revealed by the player in a recent interview, however, it was Carlo Ancelotti’s son and Real Madrid assistant manager Davide Ancelotti who first saw the spark in him.

“Meeting him was a very important step in my career. From the beginning, he backed me, and it was not easy to pay what Napoli paid for me, a player who had not played much in La Liga with Betis.”

“If it weren’t for him, I wouldn’t be here. I have a very good relationship and friendship with him,” he added.

Fabian Ruiz credits Davide Ancelotti for his success. (Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)

A special eye

Ruiz’s comments on Davide Ancelotti only make it clearer as to why Carlo Ancelotti holds his son’s advice in high regard. It is, after all, a testament to the tactician’s keen eye for special talent.

As revealed earlier this year, it was the manager’s son who suggested Joselu’s substitution against Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League semifinals when the team was on the brink of elimination.

What happened next was history as the veteran scored twice within minutes to turn the game around and send the Bavarians crashing out.

Davide has been rumoured to be interested in walking his own path soon as a specialist coach, but as it stands, will continue working under his father for at least one more year at Real Madrid.

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