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Ancelotti: “To talk so much about the absences is disrespectful to the backups who are doing well”

The coach also looked ahead to his reunion with Walter Mazzarri.

Real Madrid Press Conference - UEFA Champions League Group C Photo by Oscar J. Barroso / AFP7 via Getty Images

Real Madrid face Napoli on Wednesday night and it’ll mean a reunion with Walter Mazzarri for Carlo Ancelotti. Speaking about the Italian club’s change of coach and the game in general, Ancelotti said in a Tuesday press conference: “Mazzarri is a very experienced coach and a great friend. I think a change of coach always adds motivation to players and that’s what happened. He can also bring his experience and knowledge of the game.”

Ancelotti on the lengthy injury list

When the coach was asked for his thoughts on the current injury crisis at Real Madrid, he replied: “To talk so much about all the absences seems a little disrespectful to those who are coming in and doing well. These players are contributing better than expected. That means the squad is very good. And, the academy players offer a lot too. Nico Paz and Gonzalo García have contributed what little they have played, while we have Mario Martín and Theo Zidane in the squad. I have a lot of confidence in them. Raúl’s work with them has been great, meaning these players are ready. I have to prioritise players like Brahim, Lucas Vázquez or Fran García, but the academy graduates are ready.”

Ancelotti on benching Lunin

After making clear following the Cádiz game that Kepa remains the starter when both the Spaniard and Lunin are healthy, Ancelotti said: “Lunin won’t approach tomorrow’s game thinking it’ll be his last. Even when Kepa comes back, both will compete with each other. Lunin has been competing and playing well and the competition is good. We have two goalkeepers playing at a high level, and they can each contribute with their different qualities.”

Ancelotti on Bellingham’s rapid adaptation

Asked about Jude Bellingham’s rapid adaptation, a question that has been put to the coach many times already, Ancelotti said: “He is very intelligent, professional, serious and mature, that’s why he could adapt very well. Above all, he is a fantastic player. He could adapt to any football country in the world.”

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