Under pressure Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti has expressed his anger at critics who have defined him as a too softa . The Italian has come under severe pressure following back to back defeats first to Athletic Bilbao in La Liga and then to German side Schalke in the Champions League.

“The relationship with the players is what’s most important, it matters a lot more than the one with the president,” AS quotes him as saying. “If there is no good feeling with the guys, you are a dead man. Someone calls it friendship; I simply call it respect, although I like to laugh and joke with them.

“The intelligent people know when it’s time to get serious. Whoever defines me as ‘too soft’ angers me, because it is not true.”

While Madrid, who are the defending champions in the Champions League, managed to find a way into the quarterfinals of the competition but were outplayed and outfought by Schalke who won 4-3 at the Bernabeu on Wednesday.

Scenes at the famous stadium were iconic as fans whistled, jeered and waved white handkerchiefs at the home sidea s performance. Ancelotti admitted that his team were rattled following the defeat, but also said that he believed in his teama s ability to bounce back.

“It’s normal for us to be rattled. Everyone at Real Madrid is rattled by what’s happened. That doesn’t mean we’re going to give up,” he said. “We’re going to put in more effort and be more committed. I’m convinced we’re going to turn this situation around very quickly. The players are eager to get out of this situation and to sort out the problems we’ve had.

The Italian did, however, put a spin to that and said that the players were using it as a motivationa to improve.

“Things are wide open. We want to reach the end of the season still in the running for all the trophies we’re vying for. When the fans whistle you it means they’re not happy. I use it as motivation to improve. I don’t feel pressure from the press: I’m focused on my job. I try to make decisions based on what I think, not what I hear.”