Real Madrid Manager Carlo Ancelotti picking his way through Florentino Perez minefield with selections

It goes without saying that if you want to manage Real Madrid (well), you need to be able to handle President Florentino Perez. And in that, Carlo Ancelotti is an expert.

The head honcho at the Santiago Bernabeu has always taken an active interest in the day-to-day of Los Blancos, and comes into the dressing room after every match, to congratulate or otherwise. Ancelotti speaks with him after every match too, as Perez discusses selections and tactics with the Italian.

Perez has his preferences, and as well as navigating a squad that has several fairly obvious flaws, Ancelotti must ensure his choices do not draw him too far onto the wrong side of his boss. ‘Sometimes Perez tells Ancelotti directly what he desires, at others, his message arrives through intermediaries’.

Relevo have revealed some of those preferences, and with them, explained Ancelotti’s recent selections. Brazilian forward Rodrygo Goes has been disappointing so far, with just one goal this season on the first matchday. His goal drought has lasted over 750 minutes, and with Vinicius Junior now fit again, it leaves Ancelotti with a selection dilemma. Joselu Mato has been in good form, scoring four so this season from just five starts.

That is part of the reason that Rodrygo found himself on the bench against Girona, but Perez believes that the tandem of Rodrygo and Vinicius are the best options for Los Blancos, hence why for the big occasions, for example against Atletico Madrid and Napoli, Rodrygo will be included.

Ancelotti is a fan of Joselu, whose presence in the air allows Real Madrid out of pressure with ease, while his positioning in the box drags the attention of defenders away from others. However Perez is keen to ensure that with the world’s eyes on Real Madrid, their number one plan is not launching the ball into the big man.

Eduardo Camavinga is another hot button issue. The Frenchman has been in fine form this year and Perez appreciates that, only not from left-back. The President feels that he is unable to show his full range of abilities from there and prefers him in midfield. Perez is partisan to all four of Aurelien Tchouameni, Fede Valverde, Camavinga and Jude Bellingham to be included, with Toni Kroos and Luka Modric coming in and out for them.

With Camavinga at left-back though, it allows Ancelotti to include the four younger midfield stars, and find a place for Kroos too. Even if it is not ideal, it does allow Ancelotti to find a compromise for his preferences too. For the important matches, it now goes without saying that both of Kroos and Modric will no longer be starting.

No doubt the results against Girona and Napoli will reinforce Ancelotti’s selections and reasoning for putting Camavinga at left-back, while still more or less compromising to Perez’s preferences.

It’s a tricky conundrum for Ancelotti, who will be aware that Kroos, especially in this form, gives him the pausa and control that none of the the younger options offer. The problem may come in those bigger matches though. Camavinga did OK in the first leg against Manchester City last season, but was exploited time and again in the second leg. No doubt Ancelotti will solve one problem at a time.

Tags Carlo Ancelotti Florentino Perez Real Madrid
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