NEWS STORY. 28/04/2023. Rodrigo Salamanca. Photographer: Antonio Villalba
Carlo Ancelotti spoke in the press room at Real Madrid City the day before the clash with Almería, on matchday 32 of LaLiga. The coach had the following to say: "We're playing against teams that are fighting for important things, whether it's relegation or to play in the European competitions, and it'll be a very demanding game and even more so for us because our last performance wasn't good in Girona. We want to play to the best of our ability tomorrow."
"I'm naturally optimistic and I think the team's doing well, they're motivated, and there's a good atmosphere. Sometimes there are moments that you can't understand, like the match against Girona, but I'm still confident because I feel the team is good. We're all well up for these games. We want to repeat last year's success because it was unforgettable and it provides great motivation for this season."
"We have concerns about him because he's a player who always tries to take players on and the only way to protect his integrity is through justice. It’s the only thing that can prevent something bad from happening on the pitch."
“There are two issues: on the pitch and off it. On the pitch, people still talk about skin colour and racism. This is bad for a society that is trying to be modern. On the pitch the players are more protected compared to the players of the past. Vinicius gets kicked a lot in Spain. Maradona or Pelé also got kicked in the past. Fortunately for us, Vinicius has such a strong frame that he is able to stand strong and he hasn't had any injuries. Hopefully he can continue like that.”
"Luka had a minor injury in Girona and he won’t available. We're waiting to see how he evolves and I don't know if he will make for the cup final. We’ll have to see how he evolves in the next few days. It’s a blow for us, but this is what can happen in football. Let's hope we have him back for the remaining games, which are important."
“It's not a problem of sticking your foot in or not, it's a problem of concentration. Naturally, you can't always be at your best, especially mentally. Defensive work is a matter of concentration when you don't have the ball. Sometimes we don't have that concentration in every game. That's normal because the schedule is so demanding.”
“A lot of coaches complain about this because we're human. This happens to me too. I'm not able to prepare every game in the same way. Some games I'm more focused on a solid strategy and other times I have difficulty because I'm less focused. It happens to you at work as it does to others. You have good days and not so good days. This also happens to a team on a psychological level.”
“The analysis we made with the players after the Girona game was that the defensive side wasn't good enough. We have to focus on that in the next games, especially tomorrow, and the players have taken that on board. We will approach tomorrow in a different way.”
“We could have done better in the league. We haven't always been effective and strong as we were in the Champions League and Copa games. That's a constraint we have had. This isn't the time to look back because there's still a lot to do. We'll fight until the end, until the last game and until the last minute. In the other two competitions we have reached a final and in the other one we are close to getting there.”
“My future is fixed until 2024 and after that I don't know.”
“The plan after the Copa match has been made. We play at ten o'clock and we've decided to sleep in Seville because we can't get back at three or four o'clock in the morning. The match could end at midnight if there is extra time. Whatever happens in the final, we'll stay in Seville and we'll train when we return on Sunday. Then we will train on Monday in preparation for the game against Manchester City. We have to give the players more time to recover.”
Depth of the squad
“Ceballos is the most similar to Modrić in terms of characteristics. We have very good midfielders in Camavinga, Valverde and Tchouameni, and a lot of options to replace Luka. You can't replace Luka's experience, but I have top-level midfielders and we'll make sure we do it right.”
“Right now we're not thinking about the semi-final. We're focused on what we have to do for tomorrow's game, then Real Sociedad and then the cup final. There are no secrets about City, they're a great team and they're in good form They have very talented players like Haaland, De Bruyne, Gündoğan, Rodri and a fantastic coach. It's certainly going to be a very enjoyable match.”
Replacements for Modrić and Militão
“I don’t know who will be the most difficult to replace. We may have to replace both of them for the first leg, certainly Militão".