Ancelotti hasn’t chosen Madrid’s 1st-choice keeper
Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti has yet to decide whether Iker
Casillas or Diego Lopez will be his first-choice goalkeeper.
Madrid’s new Italian manager also refused Sunday to talk about
Tottenham winger Gareth Bale, whose transfer to the Spanish club
Ancelotti started Lopez in Madrid’s Spanish league opener last
weekend – a hard-fought 2-1 win over Real Betis – but he wouldn’t
say who will be in goal for Monday’s match at Granada.
Ancelotti added that regardless of which keeper plays, the
decision ”won’t be definitive.”
Casillas was benched last season by former coach Jose Mourinho,
a move that drew heavy criticism from a large section of Madrid’s
”I’m fortunate to have two fantastic goalkeepers,” Ancelotti
The former AC Milan manager skillfully dodged repeated questions
regarding Bale, who has been in the southern resort town of
Marbella since Saturday.
”It’s a question I don’t like to speak about for two reasons,”
Ancelotti said. ”First, Gareth Bale is not a player of Real Madrid
at this moment, and second I need to have respect for my players
who stay here and focus on the game for tomorrow. I hope the end of
the market will arrive soon.”
Later on Sunday, Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas also did
his best to avoid the issue of where Bale will play this
”There is interest from Real Madrid, but I’m not sure if the
transfer will happen or not,” Villas-Boas said.
The Portuguese coach added that Bale had been allowed two days
off due to a foot injury, thus excusing him from Sunday’s 1-0 win
Madrid’s offer for Bale is reportedly similar to the 80 million
pounds ($131 million) it paid for Cristiano Ronaldo in 2009.
The massive bid drew criticism from Gerardo Martino, Barcelona’s
new Argentine coach, who on Saturday called it ”a lack of respect
considering how the world is right now.”
Ancelotti responded with strong words for his fellow newcomer to
”(Martino) hasn’t been here long. He still doesn’t understand
how football in Europe works nor how his own club works,”
In June, Barcelona paid Santos (euro) 57 million ($74 million)
to acquire the 21-year-old Neymar.