NEWS STORY. 20/05/2023
Carlo Ancelotti appeared in the press room at Real Madrid City on the day prior to the clash with Valencia on LaLiga matchday 35 at the Mestalla: “The team is ready and we have all the players available. We want to get back into a positive dynamic and tomorrow we have the chance to do things right. The aim is to finish the season strongly and Valencia are fighting with all their soul."
"We have to be ready and we will be. We'll put out the best possible team because almost everyone has recovered well. We rested well and the team is in good shape physically."
"The last game was very poor and we're hurting. The season has been good, although it could have been better, and the last couple have been unforgettable. We're not happy about our performance in LaLiga, but we won three competitions and fought to the end in the Champions League."
The Champions League semi-final
“It is a painful elimination but it's a semi-final, it wasn't in the Group Stages or the Round of 16. We're hurting but you can always come up against a team in better shape who deserve to win. We congratulate Manchester City because those are the values of this club. Now we have to look forward and at the next Champions League campaign.”
Smooth relationship with the president
“We spoke yesterday, as we do most weeks. We had a meeting, assessed the match and he showed me his affection and support. We also spoke about the last couple of seasons and we will continue moving forward with the same or greater hunger to do a good job."
Plans for next season
"Now isn't the time to talk about next season, although we are talking to the club. We're taking a look at what happened over the course of the last couple of seasons but this isn't the time or place to reveal what we've been talking about."
Transition in the squad
"I'd need a long time to talk about that but I'll have a go. The transition began even before I arrived. This squad has done incredible things but they started to lose pieces back in 2018 when Cristiano Ronaldo left. From that point on, the talented youngsters started to come in. When I arrived, we lost others in Varane and Ramos. Later, Marcelo, Bale, Isco. Players who have been replaced by young kids with incredible quality."
"Vini Jr. grew into his role last year and no he's an undisputed starter. The same goes for Militão. Camavinga started to work his way in last year, playing from the bench in big games, as did Rodrygo. This year, Rodrygo, Valverde and Camavinga are all first names on the team-sheet. Tchouameni had a brilliant early part of the season and was starting every game. The transition has begun and will continue next season. The youngsters will have a greater role to play and the veterans will be involved less and less. That's normal in a transitional period. It will stop the day that Modrić, Kroos, Benzema, Carvajal and Nacho are no longer in the team."
“They are being dealt with seriously and professionally. There are talks ongoing with the club, they will make the decisions they see fit. It's in the players' court right now and everything will be cleared up at the end of the season."
Hunger to train
"I'm even hungrier and eager to do better following the latest defeat. The desire at Madrid is always at the very top level."
Interest from Brazilian National Team
“Everyone knows my situation very well. I have a contract until June 2024 and the club have already guaranteed I will see out my contract. Everyone knows that's exactly what I want to do."
“It makes no sense to question him. He can have a bad game but he wasn't the only one. The team didn't get things right, it wasn't Karim. I think he is still a hugely important player and a club legend."
Praise for Valverde
“He didn't show his best form in the early stages of the season, his best is spectacular. He has a problem with his foot which has meant he couldn't train at 100%. It's been a very positive season for him, he made the difference in several games. Perhaps we didn't see his best on Wednesday but it was a bad day for everyone. He's still an unbelievable central midfielder playing at the top level, who is going to have a great history at this club."
“He's been a big miss for us because he showed his defensive solidity last season. It also meant we had to put Camavinga there, who could have brought us energy to the middle of the park. I hope he can stay injury-free because he's an important player for us."