Happy with my team ‘full of stars’


Carlo Ancelotti has said the eventual signing of Kylian Mbappe was not a topic of discussion in the Real Madrid dressing room and said his « star-studded squad » could compete for the trophies without further additions.

Mbappe is a long-term target for Madrid, but Paris Saint-Germain have held their ground saying the France international will not leave, despite his inability to renew a contract which has entered his final year.

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Madrid – who face Levante in La Liga on Sunday – have so far only added David Alaba on a free transfer this summer, while also raising funds after Raphael Varane joined Manchester United and Martin Odegaard moved to Arsenal.

When asked if Mbappe’s arrival was a realistic possibility, Ancelotti said at a press conference: “I don’t know. I don’t care what will happen in the next ten days [before the transfer window closes] because I have a very good strong team. I’m excited and happy to train them, I’m focused on that.

“Obviously, in the locker room, we do not talk about the transfer market,” he added. “You’re only talking about the games we’re going to play. Collectively, we think about preparing for matches and creating a good atmosphere in the locker room. At the moment, we have that. « 

Under former coach Zinedine Zidane, Madrid finished second in La Liga last season, two points behind champions Atletico Madrid, and were knocked out in the Champions League semi-finals by the future winner. Chelsea.

“This team, as it is, can compete for anything,” added Ancelotti. “We have some really big stars here, I won’t name them all, but there are a lot of better players: [Thibaut] Courteous, [Dani] Carvajal, Nacho, Alaba, I’ll forget it for sure, Karim [Benzema], [Gareth] Ball, [Eden] Risk.

“This team is full of stars. These stars must work together… A star alone is only a star. A star who is able to work for others is a star who wins trophies. « 

Ancelotti was also forced to rule out a return to Madrid for Cristiano Ronaldo earlier this week, after reports in Spain that the pair had spoken of a move.

“The topic is over,” said Ancelotti. “After the rumors, I wanted to clarify that the club’s idea for the future is the same as the one I have. We’re waiting impatiently. Having said that, everyone at Real Madrid cares for Cristiano, me more than most because he has helped me win a lot of trophies. « 

Ancelotti added that midfielder Luka Modric – who will miss Levante’s game with a groin problem – could return for next weekend’s game at Real Betis, while Toni Kroos is expected to return from injury after the break international.

In the meantime, he has said he will experiment with winger Marco Asensio in an unknown midfielder role.



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