Real Madrid: Remember the real reason why they hired Carlo Ancelotti

Real Madrid, Carlo Ancelotti (Photo credit should read GERARD JULIEN/AFP via Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Carlo Ancelotti (Photo credit should read GERARD JULIEN/AFP via Getty Images) /

As the Euros loom and the summer transfer rumors begin to heat up, Real Madrid fans will likely start dreaming of signings beyond the No. 1 target, Kylian Mbappe. Madridistas will be glued to updates regarding the PSG superstar and his Dortmund counterpart Erling Haaland, while they will also study new names such as Manuel Locatelli or Nicolo Barella in Serie A.

But the cold, hard reality is that Real Madrid probably won’t sign any of those players. If they sign anyone, then it will be Mbappe and nobody else. And if that happens, Madridistas should be elated that they have signed the most valuable player money can buy. If Mbappe does not come, they must temper their expectations for the kinds of supplemental signings Real go after.

Carlo Ancelotti wasn’t hired to lead a Revolution or a rebuild. You don’t go after a stable, experienced manager for his second term at the club if you are trying to shake things up. If Real wanted to make a big splash and invest in a rebuild, they would have went out and signed Antonio Conte or taken a bold risk and immediately showed concrete signs of backing the new man.

Instead, they have hired a quality, safe pair of hands in Ancelotti. You know exactly what you are going to get from him. He is a manager who will maximize a current squad, work well with the veterans, encourage the youngsters, and hold over this team as a competitive outfit for a season or two. However long it takes until Real Madrid feel like they can transition into a new era.

Carlo Ancelotti can get Real Madrid’s fallen stars to be exciting once more

Real Madrid are not going to be able to get rid of every player the fans want out of the club to free wage space. Marcelo, Isco, Gareth Bale, and Eden Hazard are not going to have many suitors on the transfer market. In fact, I would be surprised if anyone is interested in signing any of them. And if they are, it would be at such a low fee that Real may just say, “Well, it’s better to keep them and hope for the best, in that case.”

And therein lies the most fundamental reason for hiring Ancelotti. “Hope for the best” isn’t just a tongue-in-cheek saying with him. An experienced manager who can work with different systems, any collection of talent, and build a scheme to fit an attacker’s strengths, Ancelotti is maybe the only coach available who could juggle the responsibilities at Real Madrid. And doubly so in this current time period with limited finances and veterans with a point to prove.

Ancelotti can help them prove something by building a free-flowing, multi-faceted attack that accentuates the goal-scoring instincts of Gareth Bale, the creativity of Isco, the fragility of Eden Hazard, and the untapped potential of young guns Vinicius Junior and Martin Odegaard.

Real Madrid hired Ancelotti to be a bridge to what’s next. They hired him to be a manager who is OK with not getting an overhaul and is happy to be in Madrid, working with the player they have. Whereas Conte or even Zinedine Zidane would not be interested in catering to mercurial talents like Isco and Bale, the magnanimous Ancelotti sees them as a blank canvas. They are talented vets with that little something extra Don Carlo believes he can coax.

Temper your expectations this summer. Hope for Mbappe, expect very little else, if even him. Your real focus should be on which players go and which players Ancelotti can aid among those who must stay. Real Madrid are not in an easy situation in their history, and, as fans, there is a duty to be realistic about the financial climate.

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Ancelotti’s hiring provides stability in the turbulent waters, yet there’s a subtle upside to the man that could help Madridistas see one last “hurrah” from a group of attackers many have already long given up on. Combine those two factors, and you can see why Los Blancos saw Don Carlo as not just their best option, but their only option.