Carlo Ancelotti avoids questions around potential contract renewal ahead of Villarreal clash

Real Madrid will face Villarreal on Sunday night, where they will have a chance to regain top spot, with Girona playing on Monday. In the pre-match press conference (adapted from Marca), Carlo Ancelotti responded to questions regarding goalkeeper choice, their struggles to convert penalties, and remarked on Xavi’s comments about his Barcelona team. However, there was one point on which the Italian would not be forced into an answer: whether he would renew his contract with the club.

Villarreal match

Ancelotti: “We are close to Christmas. We’re coming up against a good side, but we are playing well ourselves. The players are motivated, and we want to end the year well.”

There is an ongoing question as to who will be the number one goalkeeper at the club after Andriy Lunin’s impressive performances in the absence of Kepa Arrizabalaga, who was sidelined with an injury. Kepa started in their Champions League match against Union Berlin, while Lunin was preferred in their league match against Real Betis. It may suggest that Lunin will be the La Liga keeper and Kepa will feature in the Copa del Rey and Champions League matches, but when asked who would start tomorrow, Ancelotti responded, “I’ve already decided, but I haven’t told the players my decision, and I want them to hear it from me. It’s a hard decision because they’re both good.”

Advice for Endrick

Ancelotti: “He should enjoy the moment. He’s progressing very well, and we are delighted that he will be our player next year, but we have to wait until July. We have been with him and have spoken to him.”

On the missed penalties and a potential new penalty taker

Luka Modric was the latest to miss from the penalty spot against Union Berlin in a game that Real Madrid went on to win 3-2. That was their third missed penalty in a row, and there are questions surrounding who will be the permanent taker. When asked about the situation, Ancelotti responded, “Last year, there was a very clear line: Karim (Benzema) first and Modric second. This has changed. Luka was the first option, but he didn’t play at the start of the season. We have Joselu, who is a good taker, but he doesn’t always play. We are working to resolve the problem.”

On Xavi’s comments about Barcelona being the most complicated team

Ancelotti: “I can’t say which team is the most complicated. It’s normal that a manager has critics, and we have to accept them and the manager can say whether they are fair or not. The results are ultimately the most important thing. Nobody cares about the method; what matters is if we win or not. Xavi knows this, and he knows how to handle it. He’s a good coach.”

On Toni Kroos’ potential return to the German national team

Ancelotti: “Germany would be lucky to have one of the best midfielders in the world if he decides to return.”

On a potential contract renewal

Ancelotti has tried to avoid questions as to whether he will renew his contract with the club. His focus is entirely on the team’s performance, and he has repeatedly said that he is in a wait-and-see situation.

When asked if he would renew tomorrow, Ancelotti chose not to comment, “Another question…If the club is happy, it already knows I am happy. In terms of renewal, we have no rush and no problems.”

GSFN | Finn Entwistle

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