Ready For Elche & Mazel Tov, Martin!

21 Feb

Satellite (3)The team had their final practice before they will travel to face Elche at the Martínez Valero stadium tomorrow.

Fabio again trained with the team for the first part of the session and then worked alone. Reserve players Marcos Lavín and Febas joined the squad on the pitch.



Ancelotti: “Elche have improved and the game will be intense”
by Javier Garcia | Photographer: Helios de la Rubia

“We know that if we win, we stay top of the table and that is our aim”, added the Italian.

Carlo Ancelotti analysed the game against Elche in the press room at Ciudad Real Madrid. The Italian coach explained the key approaches to winning at the Martínez Valero: “It will be a game with lots of intensity and pace. Elche have improved their game over the last fortnight. They are organized and confident. It is a difficult game that comes at the end of a good week for us and we would like to end the week well tomorrow”.

“There will be two reserve players in the squad. I have not decided if I am going to make changes or if I am going to put out the same team as against Schalke. Ramos and Coentrão still have not recovered. Sergio is improving well. Coentrão will begin to train with the team next week. Varane and Carvajal have recovered without any problems. Casillas will play tomorrow”.

Relationship with the players
“If the players see me as a father figure it is because I am older than I really think. I would prefer them to see me as a brother. We have a good relationship and that is positive. It was a key aspect last year. There is respect for my work and I also respect their work”.

The goal celebration with Marcelo
“The truth is that I decided to go onto the pitch to hug Marcelo because he scored a goal with his right foot and that really surprised me. It was not a gesture from the players, just a goal celebration. We have a good relationship and that makes me happy”.

Ancelotti feels appreciated
“I feel that I am appreciated. Everyone around me shows me affection. The players, the club, the president. We are not in a hurry to renew my contract. My aim is to win titles and that is possible for us. Ever since I arrived, I knew that we have to win. That is nothing new for me. At all of the clubs I’ve managed, the aim was to win titles”.

“I have very fond memories of most of my 100 matches in charge of Real Madrid.”

“I don’t think that there will only be a contract if we win this year. The end of the season might be a good time to talk about an extension. Nothing will happen if we don’t talk. I have a contract until June 2016″.

“He is improving, he is doing quite well. The injury is in the past. We remember Khedira’s injury and we have to be careful. However, Jesé could play and he could start”.

100 matches
“I can say that I feel really good. What I thought about the club from the outside has turned out to be true within it. The games have gone by very quickly. I have very fond memories of almost all of the games. Tomorrow will be the 100th game and in the game after that we will begin the next set of 100″.

Modric will be available for El Clásico
“He is doing well, he is feeling good. He has worked with us since Thursday. He still has not had a full session with the team but he will next week. I think that he will be ready by 22 March and we hope to be able to select him before then”.

“He gave what he always gives: security at the back, confidence, personality…He is a really important source of support for the young defenders”.

The pressure of Barcelona
“We have pressure because we are playing a difficult game in a difficult week. That is why there is pressure, we know that if we win then we stay top of the table and that is our aim”.

Barcelona and Atlético in the Champions League
“Nothing they do in Madrid changes anything for Madrid. We have to look at what we do. Barcelona and Atlético are very strong opponents in La Liga and the Champions League. If we want to win La Liga and the Champions League then we have to face up to these two sides, who are among the best in Europe. Then there is Chelsea who are having a good season…and Bayern Munich. Spanish football is lucky to have three very strong teams. I would like to have another final against a Spanish team”.

“If the players see me as a father figure it is because I am older than I really think. I would prefer them to see me as a brother.” LOL! I love you, Carletto!

The following players were called up for the match:

Goalkeepers: Casillas, Keylor Navas and Pacheco.
Defenders: Pepe, Varane, Marcelo, Carvajal, Arbeloa, Nacho and Diego Llorente.
Midfielders: Kroos, Bale, Lucas Silva, Isco, Illarra and Medrán.
Forwards: Cristiano Ronaldo, Benzema, Chicharito and Jesé.

And a hearty mazel tov to Martin Odegaard who scored his first goal for Real Madrid in Castilla’s decisive 4-0 win over Barakaldo.

– Lozil

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