NEWS STORY. 16/04/2022. Rodrigo Salamanca. Photographer: Helios de la Rubia
Carlo Ancelotti shared his thoughts with the media in an online press conference from Real Madrid City on the eve of the LaLiga Matchday 32 encounter against Sevilla at the Sánchez-Pizjuán (9pm CET). The boss previewed the contest in the following terms: “The team is in good shape. We've had the time to recover and prepare well for this next game, which is against strong opposition. Sevilla have good quality, both individually and as a team. We're physically and mentally aware that we're getting close to the end of the season and that every game is very important, including the Sevilla game”.
“We played on Tuesday and we'll be playing again on Sunday night. In terms of fitness, we’re doing well. We want to put in a high-energy and intense performance, which is what is needed in these types of games. We've had enough time for everyone to recover."
“Luka will end his career at Madrid. I don't know when that will be. That's the idea we've all got. There are no issues between us, the club and himself in terms of his renewal. It's all pretty clear. He really looks after himself and hasn't had any major injury issues. That's really helped him out. He's a legend of the game, just like Maldini, who won his last Champions League title at the age of 40. His quality, discipline and the way in which he understands the game allows me to compare him with Maldini. They're legends of the game”.
Winning every game
“We need to win and get the three points because the LaLiga title race isn't over. Everyone is waiting for us to slip up and that hasn't happened as yet. The LaLiga title race is still wide open. We've got an advantage, but we want to pick up the points tomorrow and in our next games between now and the end of the season. We can end up slipping up in every game we play. Sevilla are still in the hunt for the title or to finish amongst the top four. We're aware of their strengths and are ready”.
“Militão has really surprised me with his performance levels and quality. He's got room for improvement. Everything he's done so far has been really good. He’s capable of improving his concentration and his fitness is really excellent. He's quick, strong in the air and good on one-on-ones. He needs to improve in terms of the way he reads defensive situations because he is too reliant on his fitness. He really has surprised me and is having an amazing season”.
“Calmness is an important aspect and it's something I have to assess and that I devote time to. I have no issue with Kroos. We've looked each other eye to eye. He really is a great person. I won't be asking him for any explanations. I know him very well as a person and it was all over at the end of the game.”
“Eduardo is continually progressing. He's performing just how we expected him to. He's got a lot of quality and is improving. He's contributing a great deal. He sometimes struggled a little bit more when he was starting games. He now has more confidence and personality. He brings a lot of energy in the middle third and made all of the difference in the games against Chelsea and PSG. He's improving very quickly”.
“Hazard is doing fine. They have removed the plate which was causing him discomfort. I don't like to talk about the medical side of things because we have to protect the players' privacy. He couldn't continue to play with the plate because he was having problems and getting infections. He's now fine and needs to recover”.
“I see us as being in a pretty good situation. We’ll be without Marcelo and Mendy in this game. They're not major issues. The team is in good shape in terms of fitness and we've seen that in all of our games, such as the period of extra time against Chelsea. That's one instance when we could have suffered a little bit more. Some of the players helped us out because they contributed with their fitness. The team is in good shape and recovers well after games. It looks like we're going to reach the end of the season in good shape”.
“What I'm most interested in is that we’re competing and fighting for silverware come the end of the season. That's where our focus lies”.
“He's a young player we've signed recently. He's got quality and is learning. He's got a lot of quality. He’s a right wing-back with energy who picks things up quickly and is disciplined. Our plans are to use him in the future, which is the case for all of the boys in our academy”.