Ready For The Reds

3 Nov
Gentlemen! Try not to break each other!

Gentlemen! Try not to break each other!

Tomorrow we once again face Liverpool. Somewhere on the other side of Manhattan, I can hear watishista Mandi kvetching. It’s tough going when both your teams play each other. Like Highlander, there can only be one and (sorry, girl!) I’m praying that it’s Real Madrid.

The team had their last training and hopefully, the previous picture was the only noggin knocking that occurred, well, besides the Mister smacking Man Edith upside the head lovingly. Wonder what cheeky remark he made? Gareth finds it funny.

And look at everyone checking Cris out, especially Gareth. I can see the hearts floating right out of his eyes. Subtlety, boy. Learn it, live it, love it. On second thought, nah! It’s so much fun watching you pine and hero worship.
Satellite (11)

Joining the session were Castilla’s Jacob, Medrán and Aguza. Dani,Fabio, Illarra, Sami and Jesé trained indoors.

Carlo’s presser


Ancelotti: “We’re on a good run and that gives us confidence”
by Alberto Navarro, Photographer: Helios De La Rubia

“Against Liverpool we have to maintain the same attitude and style as in recent games,” he said.

Carlo Ancelotti spoke to the media in the Ciudad Real Madrid press room as he analysed his side’s Champions League encounter with Liverpool: “We’re playing well. We’re on a good run and that gives us confidence. We’re happy and we’re focused on our games. Each one is important. We did well against Granada and now we’re only thinking about Liverpool. Every game is a test and a time when you can improve or slip backwards. I have a very disciplined and professional team. They bring complete professionalism, whether they win or lose.”

“We have to maintain the same attitude and style as in recent games. It’s a style we looked to play last year. At the beginning we didn’t manage it, but afterwards we did. It’s nothing new for Real Madrid to play with possession. Our idea remains the same and tomorrow should be no different.”

Current displays
“In recent times the team has been giving me a lot of confidence and it’s pretty difficult to find where the players have gone wrong. It’s easier to find good things. Showing good things gives more confidence to everyone. It’s better to think about the good things than the bad ones. I tell the players that if we think about the good things, it’ll give us more confidence.”

Physical shape
“The team is in very good shape. In football there is no time to have a pre-season and the players look for fitness by playing. In that respect, it was part of the plan for the team to be in good physical shape now, and further ahead too. We have to manage things well and that’s why I think that rotating is important. Last year we were in good physical shape until the end.”

Goals and assists from Ronaldo
“That’s the atmosphere that exists in the team. Everyone works for their team-mates. He also likes to pass to a team-mate who’s better placed. I’m not thinking about Raúl’s record. It isn’t his last game in the Champions League and he has time ahead of him. He’s focused on playing for the team and not on beating records.”

“Every time there is a press conference I talk about Ronaldo. The last time I said that it’s difficult to find new words to define him. He’s a fantastic player and a fantastic professional.”

“Anyone who loves football wants to see a player like Isco.”

“He’s doing very well. Isco is a terrific player. He also has a very good image and that’s why anyone who loves football wants to see a player like him. He deserves it and I’m not surprised.”

“He has a small hamstring injury. He underwent tests this morning. What he has isn’t serious and I think that he will recover in a week. We have the international break soon and he will recover, just like Coentrão.”

“He returned today from Portugal, where he did work. This week he will work individually and after the international break he will join the group. When he’s fit he will be used, as he was last year. The players are fully aware of the fact that they can’t play every game. Last year he did well rotating with Marcelo.”

Return of Bale and Jesé
“Bale is fine. He’s ready. He is back from his injury. I still haven’t decided if he is going to start. Illarra and Khedira had problems the other day in training. Jesé is doing individual work and we’ll see when he’ll be back with the team.”

Renewing his contract
“I’m comfortable with my players. It isn’t a problem and I still have a year and a half left on my contract, so there is time to talk about it. If the club is happy with me, we’ll continue without any problem.”

Balotelli’s adaptation
“At the moment, Liverpool are looking for a solution to the departure of Suárez. Balotelli has the same problem as his team-mates. I don’t think Balotelli is Liverpool’s problem. His shirt-swap with Pepe at half-time didn’t seem a big deal to me. It’s something that a lot of players do. If Marcelo did it, for example, I wouldn’t take him off the pitch.”

Marcelo’s presser


Marcelo: “Everything’s going well, but we always want to improve”
by Alberto Navarro, Photographer: Helios De La Rubia

“We can’t relax because Real Madrid are under pressure in every competition they play in”, the defender added.

Marcelo appeared before the media alongside Carlo Ancelotti just over 24 hours before Real Madrid’s encounter in Group B of the Champions League. The defender spoke about the clash with Liverpool: “Everything’s going well, but we always want to improve each day and in each game. We’re in good form and everything’s going well”.

“We can’t relax because Real Madrid is under pressure in every competition it plays in. We want to be better than last year. We work hard every day to improve in every game”.

Opponents in the Champions League
“It’s way too early to start talking about winning the Champions League. We do whatever work the boss tells us to do and we don’t focus on other teams. We just think about winning our matches”.

“I have the trust of my manager and team-mates and that gives me more desire to help the team.”

“I’m very proud to be a part of Real Madrid and making history at the club. I feel good and my aim has always been to help the team and to play as many games as possible. I’m close to making history, but I train hard in each session and I give it everything in the matches”.

Ancelotti’s renewal
“Of course we’d like Ancelotti to renew his contract. He says everything to our faces and lets us play with freedom and do our thing on the field”.

Comparison between Cristiano and Raúl
“Both are incredible. I’ve had the pleasure of playing with both. Raúl was an incredible captain and was great on and off the field. They’re different, but both have that ambition to improve all the time and help the team. That’s the best thing about both of them”.

Praise for James
“He’s a great player. He’s very young and has a lot of time ahead of him. He’s doing very well and has the support of everyone. He can only improve and grow at Real Madrid”.

The threat of Balotelli
“He’s a great player with a lot of quality. We’re not scared of him, but we respect him”.

The following players were called up for the match:

Goalkeepers: Casillas, Keylor Navas and Pacheco.
Defenders: Varane, Pepe, Ramos, Marcelo, Arbeloa and Nacho.
Midfielders: Kroos, James, Bale, Modric, Isco, Medrán and Lucas Torró.
Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo, Benzema and Chicharito.

The team will arrive at the Santiago Bernabeu at 11:30 AM tomorrow for the pre-match concentracion. The next training is on Wednesday behind closed doors (which, of course, always makes me think of this song).

Liverpool trained at the Bernabeu. I will never forgive Xabi for leaving and denying me a Gerlonso reunion at home. One of the many ways that Xabi has caused me sadness this year. DAMN IT! WHY DID YOU LEAVE ME? WHHHHHHYYYYYYY?!!?! ::ahem:: Carrying on…

Looks like he's hosting one of those cable access exercise shows.

Looks like he’s hosting one of those cable access exercise shows. (J/K, love you, Stevie G!)

Brendan Rodgers and Jordan Henderson did the Liverpool presser (Video – overdubbed in Spanish)

Satellite (6)Isco was interviewed  on the BWIN website. Here’s an excerpt from the mothership:


Isco: “Against Liverpool we have to come out with the same attitude and not drop our guard”

“It’s an important match that can bring us qualification for the Round of 16,” he said.

Real Madrid host Liverpool on matchday four of the Group Stage of the Champions League aiming to seal qualification for the next round. In an interview given to the Bwin website, Isco assessed the shape his team is in and looked ahead to the clash with the Premier League outfit: “It’s going to be an important match that can bring us qualification for the Round of 16. We’re playing against a very tough and historically very good opponent. We mustn’t drop our guard because Liverpool are capable of hurting you on any counter-attack and in any move.”

“At the Bernabéu, we have a better chance of winning than Liverpool. In football any team can cause a surprise, we have to go out on to the pitch with the same attitude and the same determination as we have been showing this season.”

Key to continuing the run
“The key is to keep on doing the same as we have been doing. The attitude we show in every game, be it at Anfield or Cornellà. The key is our attitude, going into each game as if it were the most important, and if we do that I’m sure the trophies and results will come.”

“We have a terrific team and we’re playing very well.”

“The team is standing up to be counted in every game. We’re playing to a very high level. Maybe we were more uncertain at the start. Now, with the signings adapted and the commitment of the team, with everyone taking on their role, it’s going to make the team more compact in every game. Let’s hope that this run of wins lasts a lot longer.”

His time at the club so far
“The assessment is very positive. I’m in the best team in the world and we’re winning trophies. We have won La Décima, which Madrid had been waiting for for so many years, and I hope it doesn’t stop there. Now we have a terrific team, we’re playing well and let’s hope we keep it up.”

“It’s a source of pride to have been a part of winning La Décima. My sporting career has only just started. I still have a lot of goals. If possible I want to keep on winning trophies, all the trophies a player can win. The best place to do that is at Real Madrid.”

Cristiano and Ballon d’Or
“Nobody is surprised by what Cristiano is doing. Everyone knew that he was going to beat the Champions League record and, for me, he’s the favourite to win the Ballon d’Or because of everything he has shown: the goals he has scored, the trophies he has won with Madrid.”

Praise for signings
“Kroos’s passing ability is impressive, you very rarely see him miss one. James has huge quality, a left foot that can put the ball wherever he wants. Chicharito has that scoring instinct that benefits us in games that aren’t going our way. Keylor Navas is one of the best goalkeepers in the world. He’s very quick and between the posts there are few like him.”


(Additional training shots via GF Sports)

– Lozil

5 Responses to “Ready For The Reds”

  1. CinematiqueChic November 3, 2014 at 7:18 pm #

    Ah, but what’s great about the group stage is that there can be TWO! And those two should be Madrid and Liverpool.

  2. mygypsyspirit November 3, 2014 at 7:51 pm #

    “I will never forgive Xabi for leaving and denying me a Gerlonso reunion at home. One of the many ways that Xabi has caused me sadness this year. DAMN IT! WHY DID YOU LEAVE ME? WHHHHHHYYYYYYY?!!?! ::ahem:: Carrying on…”

    It’s like you see inside my brain! 😉

    • CinematiqueChic November 4, 2014 at 9:36 am #

      If it helps, there’s a rumor going around that Stevie’s not in the starting XI today…

  3. jellyace November 3, 2014 at 9:27 pm #

    Can’t figure out why Liverpool sold Suarez (whom they loved so much for his goals) for Balotelli. Unless, of course, it was because Suarez skyrocketed their risk management budget, which they needed to recoup with his high price tag. While Balotelli may be less of a PR risk than Suarez, he also scores less goals and is still grappling with his on-pitch emotions. At any rate, welcome to the Bernabeu, Liverpool!

    So now, Suarez with Barca will face his former team Ajax. Ajax is the team where Suarez took his first bite and got a 9 match ban. I hope he doesn’t “rest his teeth” on any of his former teammates.

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