clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Ancelotti: “We’re not happy to have less than 72 hours rest, it’s not right”

The coach previewed Sunday’s match at Real Mallorca.

Real Madrid V Valencia Cf - La Liga Santander Photo By Oscar J. Barroso/Europa Press via Getty Images

Carlo Ancelotti held his latest press conference on Saturday, previewing the team’s trip to take on Real Mallorca on Sunday. Analysing the game, he pointed out how strong Real Mallorca are in defence – with just 18 goals conceded in 19 LaLiga games – and how Real Madrid aren’t thinking about the Club World Cup right now.

He explained: “We’re not thinking about the Club World Cup yet. This is the most important match for us right now, so our best line-up will play. That could include Modrić and Kroos, or it could not. Winning would be very important to allow us to go to the Club World Cup with more confidence. It’ll be difficult. It’s clear that Mallorca defend really well and counter really well. They’re having a good season, especially in defence, where they’re very solid. Alaba is fine and is available, so he can play no problem. Militão and Benzema are having tests just now, so I don’t think they’ll be available tomorrow but they should travel to the Club World Cup and could play, maybe in the second game.”

Ancelotti on the early kick-off time

Ancelotti really isn’t happy about Real Madrid having to play early on Sunday, with a 14:00 local kick-off time. That means they’ll have had just 61 hours between full-time against Valencia and the start of this one. He stated: “We’re obviously not happy to play with less than 72 hours of rest. We have to do it, but I don’t think playing at 14:00 on a Sunday after playing on a Thursday night is right. We don’t have much time to train right now. After the matches, it’s important to evaluate the fatigue of the players. Right now, the work of the fitness coaches is more important than my work.”

Ancelotti on the Mallorca players’ comments about Vinícius

After the previous meeting between these clubs got feisty, several Real Mallorca players have spoken out to criticise Vinícius. Asked if he thinks that criticism is fair and if this is an extra important game for the Brazilian, the coach responded: “Vinícius will prepare as he usually does. He’ll just try to show his quality on the pitch. He doesn’t need me to speak to him because he is focused on what he needs to do. He is spectacular with the ball, playing a way that young people like. All my grandkids have the Real Madrid shirt and they only want Vinícius’ shirt.”

Ancelotti on Ceballos and renewals

Discussing the way Dani Ceballos has been playing and what the latest is with the various contract renewals, the Italian said: “Ceballos is doing well, playing with personality and seriousness. He is doing a great job right now and hopefully he can continue like this. I’m not thinking about the renewals, I’m just looking at how they’re doing in the day-to-day work. They’ll discuss their contracts with the club.”

Ancelotti on Fede Valverde’s form

With Fede Valverde struggling for form after the World Cup, Ancelotti was asked what needs to happen for the Uruguayan to start scoring again. But, the coach pointed out that Valverde goals are a bonus and not his main job, saying: “He doesn’t need to score every game. He scored a lot at the start of the season, but what we ask for him first and foremost is to bring his energy. He is getting better and better following the World Cup.”

Ancelotti on players being offered to Real Madrid

In the final days of the transfer window, it was reported that some players got in touch with Real Madrid to offer their services, such as João Cancelo. But, Ancelotti dismissed that, saying: “It’s not true that there were players who offered to come here.”

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for the Managing Madrid Daily Roundup newsletter!

A daily roundup of Real Madrid news from Managing Madrid