Carlo Ancelotti has been here before. After winning the Champions League last season, it was always set to be a season of high expectations at Real Madrid and ahead of their Round of 16 tie with Liverpool, the burgeoning gap to Barcelona weighs heavy. In his first spell with Real Madrid, he did not manage to win La Liga in his first season, but he was dismissed just a year after European glory.
Despite the fact that Ancelotti has done an objectively good job over the course of his return, the potential for Real Madrid to lose the league and Copa del Rey to Barcelona would normally put managers under pressure at the Santiago Bernabeu. A similar European run seems improbable too.
So it was not such a surprise when it was reported on Friday that Brazil were trying to persuade him to take over the Selecao. The Brazilian Football Federation (CBF) denied these reports publicly, while Marca said that Los Blancos would discuss matters at the end of the season.
For the Italian, there is not much to discuss. Speaking to ESPN after Real Madrid’s triumph over Al Hilal in the Club World Cup, Ancelotti explained he had no intention of going anywhere.
“I don’t know anything. I’m very happy here, until they throw me out, it’s not the nicest word, but until they throw me out, I’ll stay here.”
Ancelotti has in the past admitted to the press that it is necessary to bend the truth when dealing with the press, but in this case it is believable. Without losing dignity, Ancelotti has come across as grateful for the opportunity to return to Real Madrid and appears to be enjoying life at the helm there too. Whether Florentino Perez sees things the same way will probably depend on results.