'If Madrid doesn't win Champions League...': Ex-Barca player fires colossal warning to Ancelotti before Chelsea showdown
The former Barcelona player has issued a bold statement about Carlo Ancelotti's future at Real Madrid.
Even though Carlo Ancelotti has pledged his allegiance to Real Madrid, there's a heavy possibility that the veteran Italian manager might receive an unceremonious exit from the Santiago Bernabeu at season end. Flattered by Brazil's interest in roping him as its next manager, Ancelotti has made it clear that the former AC Milan and Chelsea manager wants to honour his contract at Real Madrid.
Los Blancos had famously parted ways with Ancelotti after a disappointing season back in 2015. Club president Florentino Perez had decided to relieve Ancelotti of his duties after the Italian manager failed to win any major title in the 2014-15 season. In his second spell at Real Madrid, the former Paris Saint Germain (PSG) head coach had guided the La Liga giants to UEFA Champions League glory last year.
The La Liga holders have made it to the quarter-finals of the Champions League in their title-defending season. Ancelotti-coached Real Madrid will meet Premier League giants Chelsea for a place in the semi-finals of Europe's biggest competition at the club level. Responding to a Hindustan Times query during a Champions League press conference, former Barcelona player Jofre Mateu tipped Los Blancos to outclass Chelsea in the quarter-finals.
“The problem is that with Real Madrid you always have the feeling that you have chances. Because they play reactively. They even give you the ball, they look like they have no chances and they are just defending and in 10 minutes they score 3 goals. And Benzema is the best in transitions. Very fast. He is very clever. Madrid also have Rodrygo, they have Vinicius, they have Valverde to run. Benzema is the best finisher. There's no one who can give you a key to stop Benzema or Real Madrid. You always have chances with Real Madrid but the Champions League is their competition. So being honest, I'm not giving Chelsea many chances,” Mateu told Hindustan Times.
When asked about Ancelotti's future at the Bernabeu, the former Barcelona player issued a bold statement. Mateu feels that Ancelotti might face the axe if Real Madrid cap off another forgetful season under his watch. The defending La Liga champions are 12 points behind table-toppers FC Barcelona in the Spanish top flight. Karim Benzema-inspired Real Madrid recently secured a famous 4-0 win over arch-rivals Barcelona in the El Clasico to punch their tickets for the Copa del Rey final. Mateu asserted that Ancelotti can extend his stay at the Bernabeu by only propelling Real Madrid to a record-extending fifteenth European title.
“I'm imagining Real Madrid going through, let's see what happens in the first match here in Madrid. You know, if there's no big win for Real Madrid - we saw what happen in Liverpool but I'm not imagining Madrid winning again in London by such a margin. So it's gonna be very balanced. And yeah, If Real Madrid doesn't win the Champions League - I'm not imagining Ancelotti being here for the next season. They are planning for the future - there are some names here appearing like Mauricio Pochettino. Probably Antonio Conte, who is not managing or Julian Nagelsmann. If they win the Champions League, probably he is gonna be here. So I think it all depends on Madrid's Champions League success,” the former Barca player concluded.
Watch the LIVE coverage of UEFA Champions League 2022/23: Quarter Final (Leg 1) - Real Madrid vs Chelsea on Sony Sports Ten 2 (English), Sony Sports Ten 3 (Hindi) & Sony Sports Ten 4 (Tamil & Telugu) channels at 12:30 am IST on 13th April 2023