Carlo Ancelotti says forgotten player is part of Real Madrid’s future


Real Madrid always have tough competition for spots, and that is especially true in the midfield. Carlo Ancelotti has made it clear that he will continue to rely on the world-class triumvirate of Casemiro, Luka Modric, and Toni Kroos, which has brought no shortage of glory to the Royal White club. And they were all excellent this past weekend at Granada.

However, Ancelotti must also recognize the talent he has behind them and the importance of them getting minutes. Madridistas certainly do. Fede Valverde has been a fixture since his breakout 2019-2020 campaign and should be back in the lineup next weekend vs. Sevilla. Summer signing Eduardo Camavinga has an even higher ceiling.

And then there is Antonio Blanco. Whereas Valverde and Camavinga have gotten some minutes this season, with Fede being a starter at one point, the Castilla product has been a total afterthought. This is despite the fact that he had an excellent end to the 2020-2021 campaign.

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Before the season started, Ancelotti was reportedly set to get Blanco involved. That likely changed due to Camavinga’s signing, as he leapfrogged the Spanish international in the Real Madrid midfield rotation.

Antonio Blanco can indeed be a part of the future

Ancelotti has not forgotten about Blanco, though. Speaking at the press conference after the 4-1 win at Los Carmenes, Ancelotti said that Fede Valverde, Eduardo Camavinga, and Antonio Blanco are ‘our future’.

And they are. We know Fede’s place is locked in. Camavinga’s storybook debut at the Bernabeu was no coincidence either. He was meant to be a superstar for Real Madrid.

Blanco seems like the odd-man-out at times, because he has played just 31 minutes in La Liga this season – only defender Jesus Vallejo and Sergio Santos have fewer.

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Despite the fact that Blanco has not factored into Ancelotti’s plans, the manager still singled out the promising 21-year-old midfielder as “our future”. Our. That one word makes the statement truly seem strong, rather than just some run-of-the-mill, empty press conference praise from a manager known as one of the kindest men in football.

Blanco will have to be patient. Not everyone can show that patience at Real Madrid. How many great players – yes, we can bring up Martin Odegaard – left at the first sign of impedance? Blanco’s resolve will be tested, but maybe he can hang onto the manager’s words.

Or maybe Ancelotti won’t have that much of a say, given the interest in Aurelien Tchouameni. But with a high price tag and Chelsea interested, Blanco is a safer bet to bank on in midfield, along with Valverde and Camavinga. We’ll see if – or maybe it is just a matter of “when” – the Xabi Alonso-esque midfielder gets his next chance.


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