Ancelotti: “City is the best team in Europe at the moment”


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Carlo Ancelotti, coach of Real Madrid – Oscar J. Barroso / AFP7 / Europa Press


Real Madrid coach, Carlo Ancelotti, has assured that “optimism and not concern” prevails in the team about the Champions League quarter-final tie against Manchester City, “the best team in Europe at the moment.” “, and stressed that they are “better than ever.”

“Everyone places the rival as the favorite. They won the ‘Champions’ last year, it is a difficult tie, but here we have the confidence to do well. Playing the second leg in Manchester doesn’t matter to us,” he declared at the conference. of press. “The quarter-finals of the ‘Champions’ are always complicated. The idea, when you start the ‘Champions’, is to win the competition, and if you want to win it you have to beat the best. City is the best team in Europe in this moment. If we want to win the ‘Champions’ we have to beat City,” he added.

Furthermore, he insisted that it is “an even tie where there are no favorites”, and that they have no spirit of “revenge” for the elimination against the ‘Citizens’ last year. “Last year they deserved to pass, just like we deserved to pass a year before. It doesn’t give me any stomach ache,” he said. “In the second leg we didn’t play a good game for many reasons. We will have time to think about this, now we are focused on LaLiga and tomorrow’s game. Right now, the draw is a detail for us,” he continued.

Regarding the possibility of reversing the order of the qualifying matches so that the two legs in Madrid – Atlético and Real Madrid – do not coincide in the same week, the Italian coach downplayed it. “It doesn’t matter to us. That is a decision that UEFA has to make with the security bodies,” he stressed.

“What prevails in everyone is optimism and not worry. These are great quarterfinals between these teams and we have the confidence to fight until the last minute, as we have always done. I don’t know what kind of thinking Manchester has City, but I think they have the same one as us. In recent years, in one it went well for us and in another, for Manchester City. It’s going to be a very close tie,” he expressed.

In addition, he was “quite optimistic” about the situation of the squad. “Now we are better than ever: we have an advantage in LaLiga, we are in the quarter-finals of the ‘Champions’, Militao and Courtois are back… We are better than ever. With this I am not saying that tomorrow we will not fail, but that today We have to be happy, satisfied and very excited about the future,” he said.

In another vein, Ancelotti also talked about this Saturday’s game against Osasuna. “It is a very important game that demands a lot from us, especially before a break. We want to finish this part of the season well; I think we have done quite well, we came to this break in a good position and we have to finish it well in a important game tomorrow,” he said.

He also assured that Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois and Brazilian defender Éder Militao are about to return from their injuries. “Militao and Courtois have started working with the group, they are going to do normal training. We will take advantage of the break to get them into two friendly matches with the youth team. I think they can arrive. The idea is for them to be available for the match on the 31st against Athletic. Without risking anything. The important thing is that they are available, and they will be because they are very good,” he explained.

Regarding the racist insults towards Vinícius heard around Montjuïc and the Cívitas Metropolitano, Ancelotti recalled that “the problem is there.” “I think Valencia acted very well after that episode, and that is what those who have the possibility to do have to do. When we talk about zero tolerance, it is zero tolerance for everyone, for us and for everyone. It is necessary act to avoid this type of problems and ugly things that affect our society. Criminals do not have to be on the street, they have to be somewhere else,” he indicated.

Finally, he appreciated Brahim Díaz’s decision to play with the Moroccan team. “Brahim is an important player for us and I think he can be for any team. He has chosen where he wants him and I think he has chosen well, because Morocco has done very well; I know the Morocco coach very well, he made a World Cup fantastic. I think Brahim is going to contribute even more,” he concluded.