Non-negotiable for Carlo Ancelotti in big matches, the eternal Kroos-Modric formula has become, however, a matter for which he ends up giving an account almost daily in each public appearance. His decision remains the same as it was eight seasons ago, when the German and the Croatian met in the Italian’s first stage at Real Madrid; but doubt, paradoxically, this campaign has settled in the environment. As if the reality of his blackboard and the debate in the environment were taking different paths.
Courtois, Nacho, Dani Carvajal (Lucas Vázquez, min. 86), Rüdiger, Eder Militao, Camavinga, Modric (Dani Ceballos, min. 81), Kroos (Aurelien Tchouameni, min. 83), Benzema (Rodrygo, min. 82) , Federico Valverde and Vinicius Junior (Marco Asensio, min. 83)
Alisson, Virgil Van Dijk, A. Robertson (Konstantinos Tsimikas, min. 91), Trent Alexander-Arnold, Ibrahima Konate, Fabinho, Milner (Oxlade-Chamberlain, min. 73), Gakpo (Fabio Carvalho, min. 91), Darwin Núñez (Roberto Firmino, min. 56), Salah and Diogo Jota (Harvey Elliot, min. 56)
goals 1-0 min. 78: Benzema.
Referee Felix Zwayer
Yellow cards Klopp (min. 73) and Konstantinos Tsimikas (min. 94)
This Wednesday, after passing a passport on the return to Liverpool with an exercise in seriousness despite the fears of a “cheating match” that he expressed in the preview, Reggiolo’s man was quick to spread praise for his fetish partner, escorted this time by Camavinga. “It was a very good game between Kroos and Modric. The team could be a little scared when handling the ball to avoid pressure from the rival, but they take the ball out very well from behind”, argued the white coach, who shortly after expanded on the matter again. “Modric and Kroos don’t play for the career they’ve had, but because they deserve it,” Carletto settled.
The announced transition in the center of the field is reduced, for the moment, to the appointments between the wars, since in the days of poster and maximum demand Ancelotti’s finger continues to point to the same duo, whose contracts expire this June and their renewals are still issues to be resolved in the offices. “The key is the same: the humility of the veterans, who have no ego, and the patience of the youngsters,” he pointed out about a midfielder with a variety of profiles and ages. For example, that of Ceballos, in full flood a month ago, in a very delicate section of Madrid, and again in the shadows before the accumulation of important clashes in the League, Cup and Champions League.
“We are a modern team. We have quality, commitment, energy and experience”, proclaimed Ancelotti, who celebrated that in the draw for the quarterfinals this Friday (12:00) there will be three Italian teams (Milan, Inter and Napoli). Of the other seven classified, by the way, four appear on his curriculum (Chelsea, Bayern, Milan and Naples). “To Milan [donde entrenó ocho años y jugó cinco] I want him in the final”, Carletto wished.
There will not be a Liverpool that oozed melancholy in the Castellana. 10 months ago, only a sequence of miracles under Courtois’s sticks took him away from La Orejona, and now he lives hard in the Premier and in Europe he only left 15 minutes of fury in his lair, stopped dead by Vinicius. “We arrived [al Bernabéu] with a backpack and we had to show a special performance that we didn’t give. Just good performance. Madrid controlled the game and Alisson made two incredible saves that kept us alive, but you had to be outstanding”, explained the German coach, “more disappointed than angry”.
It was a quiet night in the Castellana for the locals, something strange in recent times in a European qualifying round. The last time that had happened, Mohamed Salah played for Roma. It was 2016 and Madrid had won 0-2 at the Olympic. In the second leg (2-0), the Egyptian started his frustration counter against Madrid after several unsuccessful occasions and the first defeat of the five in a row that he has added in this time between the Italian and English teams. In Chamartín, as in Anfield, Nacho (again acclaimed by the public), kept him at bay.
In minute 90, the fan sector gridsurprisingly half-empty already in the final stretch, said goodbye to the Champions League with an off You’ll never walk alone. Shortly after and in an unprecedented gesture, Madrid gave them their famous anthem at full volume over the public address system as thanks for the good treatment received in the first leg, with a minute of silence for Amancio.
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