It’s Napoli-Real Madrid day
Here we are, it’s the big day for Napoli – Real Madrid!
Big match odds
Ancelotti’s return to Napoli will be Napoli’s first home match in the Champions League, after losing to Braga. Garcia’s men, who have never won in the history of the competition against the Merengues, ran at 2.70 against William Hill compared to 2.55 in Madrid’s win. Instead, the first draw in the competition between the two teams rises to 3.50.
Hug with Di Lorenzo
It was Ancelotti himself who introduced Di Lorenzo to Napoli: «When Giovanni arrived here it was difficult to expect such continuous progress, but instead he never stopped – recalls Ancelotti – from Napoli to the national team, Di Lorenzo became among the best in Europe. . Congratulations to him, he has shown that with seriousness and professionalism you can reach great heights.”
Not a word was ever said against Naples, although the adventure in Naples ended badly. But Ancelotti is a noble coach: “Returning to Naples makes me remember the time I lived here, in a wonderful city. There were good moments and not so good moments, but the experience was positive. “The match is the most difficult for us in this group, but the truth is that we are used to it: the Real Madrid shirt weighs on us and it will weigh on the opponent as well.”
Applause for Ancelotti at Maradona Stadium
A long round of applause from the journalists welcomes Ancelotti to the press gallery at the Maradona Stadium: “We are playing against one of the strongest teams in Italy, which performed very well a year ago – explains Carlito – Napoli kept the same team, they have quality and they know how to compete at this level. We will play it as equals. “We will have to repeat the match against Girona.”
Real Madrid press conference
From Madrid to Naples: Carlo Ancelotti and Federico Valverde in a conference in the press room of the Maradona Stadium. The first to speak was the Uruguayan midfielder, who immediately praised his teammate Bellingham: “Global figures always leave an impact and he is no exception. He’s very young, even though he looks like he’s been playing for Real Madrid for years. “He arrived in excellent condition, looks very mature and also a positive person, who can become a good leader.”
Alaba was not called!
Alaba is not on Real Madrid’s squad list. With the absence of Courtois, Militao and Guler, who have struggled for a long period, Ancelotti also has to part with the Austrian defender. Like Napoli, therefore, Los Blancos will enter the field without their main duo in defence.
Real Madrid arrives in Naples
Real Madrid landed at Naples Capodichino Airport to the delirium of all the bosses. In fact, as they got off the plane that took them to the city, Ancelotti’s players also attracted the attention of airport workers, who were busy filming the Blancos’ arrival with their smartphones.
Di Lorenzo sets goals
Where do Napoli want to go in the Champions League? Di Lorenzo prefers to think step by step: “The first goal is to overcome the group. There is no specific match at all in the Champions League, everything is decided in detail.”
Garcia and details
«Which Real Madrid suits me? The one I would beat,” Garcia smiles. But then he warns: “I don’t know which team Ancelotti will choose. We do not have to ask ourselves who will take to the field, we have to be prepared for any arrangement, and be good at managing the details that determine big matches.”
Spoken like a true leader, Di Lorenzo. He challenges everyone: “When the team does not perform well, you tell us that we are not the same as we were last year, but if we perform well, you tell us that the version that existed a year ago is back. We always talk about a year ago, and it bothers me. We need to look forward. Some matches did not go well, but this team is strong and we are back on the right path. We will face Real Madrid with courage. We must be cheeky and accept every duel. I’m sure we’ll have a great season.”
In a match like this, there will be no need for motivational speeches: “We studied Real Madrid to study its strengths and weaknesses.
European Champions League schedule
Do Napoli-Real really deserve first place in the group? “It’s still early – warns Garcia – tomorrow’s match will not affect the group, but it is definitely better to get a positive result. “In any case, winning the first match was more important, especially away from home.”
Di Lorenzo and the Osimhen case
There is also no Osimhen case. Di Lorenzo sums up: “Victor always has the same attitude towards us, nothing has changed. I also saw it in the game: the desire he has, the readiness for the team. “Like everyone else, he will give everything he can for tomorrow’s match.”
Napoli changes the pace of play
Garcia emphasizes that there is no before and after Naples. When asked about what has changed in the tournament, he answers confidently: “Continuing to perform well. Sometimes the ball goes in and doesn’t come out.” Then confidence returned for some players, such as Kvaratskhelia, who freed himself after the goal he missed. Little has changed: now we score more goals. When you score more goals than your opponent, it’s easier to win.”
Garcia, and this is what Real regrets
Seven years later, Garcia finds Real Madrid again: “But I think about it, history is the present, it is Napoli that finds Madrid. A dream for everyone. Let’s focus on this match: we have to recover well. It will be our fourth match in nine days. It’s not easy for the team. The key word is to be ready tomorrow. “We will be on the field with our hearts in mind.”
Di Lorenzo challenges Vinicius
Not only Bellingham, Real Madrid is betting a lot on the recovered Vinicius who will find Di Lorenzo on his home ground: “Finn is an absolute champion despite his young age, we must be wary of him but also of all the others. Knowing that with the ball, we will have to impose ourselves and put them in a difficult position.”
The tactical key to the match
What will be the tactical key to the match? Garcia looks at Real Madrid at home and warns: “With Benzema’s departure, focus on Bellingham, even if he is not a real alternative. But we can’t just think about it: they have many technically strong players, but they are also physically strong and good at free kicks. They are complete, but our team has a lot of opportunities to do well. In order to have the ambition to win, we have to remain humble and give 120% of our effort.”
Garcia between heart and mind
«More heart or brain? Both,” Garcia confirms. He sums it up: “We will play with our hearts but we will also need our minds because there will be moments when we will be good at pushing or stopping Real Madrid.”
Di Lorenzo: “It’s nice to play matches like this.”
It’s captain Di Lorenzo’s turn: “It’s always good to play games like this. We will have to play and not give up: we face many champions, and this tournament is their home, but we are ready and playing at home. We will have a full stadium and we will give everything we have to put them in a difficult situation. They also know that we are a great team, and we showed that. “It will be exciting to play.”
Garcia and the passion of the Champions League
First question for Garcia: “This is the best club competition. For all of us, it’s always special, when we hear the national anthem on the pitch, it gives us a boost, it makes you realize you’re playing it. Napoli should always play in the Champions League, every year, but that also comes from the Championship. We are back in the top four after the last round and can now devote ourselves to this match against a great team. You know Ancelotti very well, and I know and appreciate him too. “Things will be complicated, but we have the ambition to do everything and win.”
The press conference is broadcast live
we are here! The press conference begins with Rudi Garcia and captain Giovanni Di Lorenzo.
He meets Napoli again at Castel Volturno
Napoli returns to the field on orders from Garcia who also allows the Italian team photographers and media present for 15 minutes. An almost complete team: The only absentees are Rahmani and Juan Jesus, who did not train with the group and will not be present tomorrow evening.
Today’s UEFA schedule is packed: Konami’s training center in Castel Volturno will open its doors this morning at 11.30am for Napoli’s final training session while Rudi Garcia and one of the players will hold a press conference at 2pm. However, in the afternoon, at 6.15pm, Carlo Ancelotti’s press conference will take place in the Maradona Stadium’s press room, followed by the Whites’ final training from 7pm.
The match is live on Sky
The Napoli-Real Madrid match will be broadcast live on Sky Sport Uno (channel 201), Sky Sport 4K (213) and Sky Sport (252). However, during the live broadcast, the match will be visible on Infinity+, Sky Go and Now.
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