Ancelotti: “I was angry with Piqué and told him so”

Real Madrid have qualified for the Spanish Super Cup final, having beaten Barcelona 3-2 after extra time in Riyadh. It was a tense game and Carlo Ancelotti later explained that he thought it was an even game. In his post-match press conference he said: “I don’t think Barcelona dominated because I think they were. They used possession and we used the counterattack. The fact that we were sitting deeper was to be able to use the counter which was very efficient. As I said before pressing high is more difficult for us because of the midfielders we have. It might not be aesthetic, but we can be successful with it. We created quality chances and scored three quality goals in what was truly a tie game.

Fede Valverde scored the game-winning goal and Ancelotti pointed it out when asked why he knocked out Luka Modrić, the player replaced by the Uruguayan. He said: “Without Modrić we lost something, but Valverde scored the goal, which means we’re in the final. He’s very quick to get into the box and he scored the goal.

Asked what he thought of Barcelona’s performances and if they were improving, the Italian said: “It’s clear that they are improving. They have important players who come back or join, like Pedri, Ferran Torres or Ansu Fati. I think Xavi will do a good job and they will improve.

Ancelotti on the argument with Pique

During his press conference, Ancelotti was asked about the argument he had with Gerard Pique when Barcelona failed to put the ball out of play when Vinícius got injured. During this discussion, the Real Madrid coach explained: “I was angry with him. I told him he should have eliminated him like we did once in the first half. He told me that they never shoot the ball in such situations and I said “sorry” and I didn’t know it. It’s respectable, if they want to keep playing and not get the ball out. I just didn’t know it.

Ancelotti on the status of his players

Asked about David Alaba and the various players who finished the game injured or exhausted, Ancelotti said: “It was just fatigue so I think everyone can be back for Sunday. Hope Alaba can come back too. We will have to recover well because there has been a lot of effort put into this match. But we’re just happy to have made progress.

Ancelotti on the importance of Carvajal

Dani Carvajal was back and scored 90 minutes of regulation time. Asked about the Spaniard, the coach said: “Carvajal is a very important player for us because of his defensive quality and his personality on the pitch. He’s more than a player and he’s an important part of this team.

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