Without Cristiano Ronaldo’s services for the upcoming fixture, Carlo Ancelotti has revealed in his pre-match press conference that Gareth Bale will start for Real Madrid against Villarreal on Saturday. The Welshman had been unavailable due to his injuries but the manager insists that he has made a full recovery and will feature in Real’s upcoming match at Santiago Bernabeu.
The ‘new’ Galactico has proved himself to be a worthy buy after scoring ten goals and providing 8 assists in 19 appearances although he has had his fair share of injuries along the campaign. Scheduled to be a part of the squad against Atletico Madrid, Bale missed the derby but is now fit for combat.
Talking about Bale, the Italian manager confessed that their summer signing will feature against Villarreal on Saturday. “Gareth Bale is ready and I think he will do a good game.” Coincidentally, it was against Villarreal that Bale made his Real Madrid debut, a game that resulted in a draw despite Bale finding his name on the score-sheet.
Following a tough fixture at home against Atletico, Ancelotti admitted that he might inject fresh blood into the team in order to rotate the squad before they face Atletico again next week. Isco and Illarramendi are expected to find a starting spot along with Gareth Bale while Xabi Alonso, Pepe and Di Maria will be rested for the match.
“Yes, we have some players that are a bit tired after that game and if they can’t play tomorrow some others who are fresh like Isco and Illarramendi will get their spot.”
Talking about La Fabrica prodigy Jese and his brilliant performances this season, Carlo Ancelotti treated the matter with caution, choosing his words for the youngster carefully.
“I am very happy with his work, he has come on very well, and is confident. We have to bear in mind that he is young. This is his first season in the first team. He’s good, levelheaded, but we have to be careful with him. Now is not the time to talk about certain things; the important thing is that he is doing well, that he is confident.”
When asked about Jese’s comment about wanting to win the Ballon d’Or in 4 years, Ancelotti was quick to point out that the youngster has just started his career and should not be thinking about such awards.
“It’s not the time to talk about the Ballon d’Or. He’s a player that at the beginning of the season we didn’t think would be helping us out so much. He knows that he is important to us, but we shouldn’t be talking about things that for now he doesn’t need.”
Quizzed about the second-leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final, the manager pointed out that the tie was far from over and that Real Madrid will be fielding a strong side to contain their cousins from Madrid.
“We need to play with a good lineup tomorrow because the match will be tough. And we will still play with the best available team against Atlético because the tie is not over yet.”
Meanwhile Cristiano Ronaldo’s three match ban has been upheld by the Appeal Committee. Real Madrid were hoping for a reprieve especially after the match official who dished out the card to Ronaldo was punished for his decision by the Referee’s Technical Committee. But it seems that Carlo Ancelotti will have to prepare for his next three fixtures without the services of his leading goalscorer, Cristiano Ronaldo.