Excluded. Ancelotti: “Passionate about this sport” | UEFA Champions League

As he prepares for his record fifth UEFA Champions League final as a manager, Carlo Ancelotti has already etched his name in the history of the competition.

Ahead of the May 28 final, the Real Madrid tactician spoke to UEFA.com about Liverpool, their final opponents, human management and more.

On the Reds, opponents in the final

2007 final: Milan 2-0 Liverpool

2007 final: Milan 2-0 Liverpool

In my Champions League career, we have faced each other many times. The first in 1984, in the final in Rome. I was not playing because I was injured. Then in 2005 and 2007, (as coach of AC Milan) and, of course, the rivalry grew when I worked at Everton. We meet again this time. They have a great squad, they are difficult to play. They play at a very high level, with great physical strength, but it’s a pleasure to find them in the final.

Liverpool – Real Madrid, latest news

On Liverpool’s supposed ‘revenge’

Liverpool - Real Madrid, their precedents

Liverpool – Real Madrid, their precedents

Do Liverpool see this as revenge after losing the final to Real in 2018? Real Madrid is also looking for revenge after losing a final against Liverpool (in 1981) in Paris. I don’t think it has much meaning. Two great teams will be opposed, and the one who will show more courage and character will win in the end.

Liverpool – Real Madrid, presentation

Ancelotti lifts the trophy after Milan success in 1989

Ancelotti lifts the trophy after Milan success in 1989Bob Thomas Sports Photography via Getty Images

On his good relationship with his players

I make the difference between the player and the person. I think it’s very important to show yourself as you are when it comes to having a relationship based on respect with someone: what they do and who they are. A player is a person who is lucky enough to play football and I am lucky enough to be a coach. You have to distinguish between what a person does and who they are.

On his fifth UEFA Champions League final

Many years have passed since the premiere. Football has changed and I have been able to adapt to these changes. Since the first final in 2003 until today, there have been many changes. There have been positive changes. Football is always a very, very interesting spectacle and I adapt to changes because I am passionate about the sport.

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