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Carlo Ancelotti speaks after last gasp win against Union Berlin

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Real Madrid’s head coach, Carlo Ancelotti, spoke to the media after his team secured a late victory over Union Berlin, marking the start of their Champions League campaign with a thrilling win.

Ancelotti emphasized the significance of scoring in the last minute, highlighting the indomitable spirit of the Real Madrid jersey.

Commends his side

“Could we have scored earlier? Yes, but I think scoring in the last minute is important; it reflects the spirit of this jersey, which allows us to believe until the end,” Ancelotti stated. “If it had been a draw, I would have said the same. The team gave their all until the end.”

Ancelotti went on to commend Union Berlin for their strong defensive display and performance.

He acknowledged that the match was as expected – complicated, with Union Berlin employing a low defensive block, making it challenging for Real Madrid to break through.

“The game has been a game we expected to be like this, complicated with a lot of control against a low block from Union Berlin, who defended well and left us space to try and find gaps between the lines,” Ancelotti noted.

The Italian coach stressed that the match went according to the plan he had set out. He praised the team’s defense and their ability to handle potential threats.

“The idea was to be patient, and we were, but not too much. There are games like this that can be a trap. We defended the counter well, and at the back, we defended effectively with no danger,” Ancelotti explained.

The hero of the night was Jude Bellingham, who scored the decisive goal. The coach praised Bellingham’s quality and persistence. “Bellingham has quality, but he also has luck. He has an extraordinary talent which he took advantage of,” he commented.

A game of two halves

When questioned about half-time changes, Ancelotti clarified that he was not angry and that the team made minor adjustments to their display. “The second half was better because we played against a team that wasn’t pressing, and they need a lot of energy to defend and deny us space,” he said.

Rodrygo’s unlucky performance

Rodrygo, who had several missed opportunities, came under the spotlight. Ancelotti explained that this was a challenging game for Rodrygo, as he excels in open spaces, which were limited by the opposing defense. “Today he had bad luck; he could have scored on two or three occasions,” Ancelotti added.

Ancelotti also praised the depth of his squad, emphasizing their competitiveness in various competitions.

He mentioned that the absence of star forward Vinícius Júnior was felt but highlighted the abilities of the players stepping in. “Vinícius… I think that he’s one of the best strikers in the world, so of course, we miss him,” Ancelotti acknowledged.

Forward Joselu received accolades for improving Real Madrid’s aerial play. Ancelotti noted that their ability in the air made them more dangerous.

Ancelotti also addressed the challenge of rotating star midfielders like Toni Kroos and Luka Modric. He stressed the importance of every player adding value to the team, whether starting or coming off the bench.

Finally, Ancelotti downplayed the tag of favorites, stating that such comments don’t significantly impact the team’s performance.

Playmaker Brahim Díaz, who remained on the bench, was acknowledged for his potential contribution, with Ancelotti expressing his intention to give him more minutes as the season progresses.

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