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    Monday, October 2, 2023

    Ancelotti Returns to Napoli


    Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti is set to lead his team against Napoli in the Champions League, marking his return to the Italian side that sacked him in 2019.

    Ancelotti, who was abruptly fired by Napoli’s president, Aurelio De Laurentiis, an hour after an important 4-0 victory over Genk, would probably be ready to show off his management skills on Tuesday at the Diego Armando Maradona Stadium.

    His first season with Napoli, which included a second-place finish in the 2018–19 season, was cut short owing to tensions in the locker room and a disagreement with De Laurentiis over a training camp.

    Ancelotti went on to manage Everton at a time when it appeared that his management career was in decline.

    But his unexpected return to Real Madrid in 2021 catapulted him back into the top echelons of football administration.

    In 2022, he achieved an incredible double by winning La Liga and the Champions League, making him the most successful coach in this aspect.

    Ancelotti changed his strategy despite suffering criticism for his strategies and the diamond midfield style after a heartbreaking 3-1 loss to Atletico Madrid in September.

    The tactical shifts reflect Ancelotti’s dedication to his role at Real Madrid, dispelling any notions of complacency. His commitment extends beyond his current position, as he is set to take on the Brazil national team job next summer.

    One of the motivations behind these tactical changes is to fortify the midfield and add resilience to the team, addressing the vulnerabilities exposed by Manchester City in last season’s Champions League semi-final.

    As Real Madrid faces Napoli in their upcoming match, Ancelotti’s strategies and squad depth will face another test.

    For Napoli coach Rudi Garcia, this fixture holds significance, as he had previously been set to face Real Madrid while at Roma in 2016 but was sacked before the last-16 tie.

    AFP

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