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Carlo Ancelotti: "We Need to Remember That Varane Just Came Back From His Injury"

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We asked Carlo Ancelotti about Varane's game in Ramos' spot. Here's what he said.

Alex Livesey

Remember when Real Madrid lost 4-1 at the Signal Iduna Park? José Mourinho decided to play Pepe in Ramos' spot -the Spanish defender had to perform as a right back- and Robert Lewandowski ended up scoring four goals. Now, with Sergio Ramos staying on the bench, it was Raphäel Varane the one who played as a left-central defender.

The French defender was steady but he was not as comfortable. It's not natural for him to play on that side -it's not for Ramos either but that's where he has always played that position-, and he didn't struggle. But questions about his potential performances there against better teams should be noted. And that is just why we decided to ask Ancelotti about his decision. Watch the video below and remember to activate CC to get subtitles.

As you can see, Ancelotti blames Varane's lack of fitness and confidence. The Italian coach believes it is not difficult for Varane to play on either flank. It's true that it is almost the same position, but Sergio Ramos is the only one of the three elite defenders whose natural position is that of a left-central defender. That's why Ramos is so important.

Nacho is also used to play there, but he can't be trusted against elite European teams just yet. Furthermore, his lack of size could be dangerous on set-pieces. If Ramos has to sit out a very important match for Real Madrid, it will be interesting to see what Ancelotti decides. Pepe struggled against Lewandowski last season and Varane was not too comfortable against a small side like Elche.

For the moment, let's see if Varane regains that confidence Ancelotti was talking about in order to judge whether he's ready to play in that spot.