The coach who will replace Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid is a familiar face, with Carlo Ancelotti returning to the Spanish capital to take over from his former assistant.
Massimiliano Allegri, Antonio Conte, Mauricio Pochettino, Raul and Xabi Alonso had all been linked, but it’s Ancelotti who has signed a three-year deal with Los Blancos.
He wasn’t Florentino Perez and Jose Angel Sanchez’s first option, but the fact they couldn’t bring in Allegri or Pochettino saw Real Madrid turn to the Italian tactician. He arrives after ending his contract with Everton in an amicable way, returning to another club where he remains well-liked and respected.
The Italian was in charge at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu between 2013 and 2015, winning the club’s 10th European Cup in his first season. The failure to win a major trophy in an injury-impacted 2014/15 season saw him depart after just two years with one Champions League, one Copa del Rey, one Club World Cup and one UEFA Super Cup to his name.
During Ancelotti’s first spell, Real Madrid had one of their most memorable runs as they put together 22 victories in a row between September of 2014 and January of 2015, scoring 80 goals during that time and conceding just 10. Then injuries hit and the season ended with Real Madrid watching Barcelona win a treble.
There were some players at that time, such as Cristiano Ronaldo, who wanted Ancelotti to stay on. But, Real Madrid changed course and brought in Rafael Benitez, which didn’t work out before Zidane arrived to start the three-peat era.
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