The major concern for club coaches, above and beyond lineups, strategies, and injuries, is the World Cup in Qatar.
The management before, during, and after the World Cup has a significant impact on the team’s success at the end of the season. Meanwhile, Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti has not ruled out any possibility when it comes to how his team might be affected following the World Cup.
“We don’t know what will happen after the World Cup,” Ancelotti said ahead of Real Madrid‘s LaLiga Santander clash against Osasuna on Sunday, also adding that fitness coach Antonio Pintus and him are formulating a plan for the coming months.
The pre-World Cup plan
This is a clear example of the concept, especially for the month of October. Madrid must rotate every three days because they have nine games scheduled over the course of 27 days. Although Ancelotti has a well-defined team, we won’t always see the same starting lineup. To minimise the chance of injury and prevent the squad from depleting its energy during the games leading up to, during, and following the World Cup, there will be changes in every lineup.
The idea is to attain maximum points in the Champions League, while also keeping an eye on the physical condition of the players. Ancelotti will need to be prepared in case of an injury before the World Cup, something both him and Pintus have been working on.
The plan during the World Cup
The players who certainly won’t be flying for the World Cup, such as Andriy Lunin, Lucas Vazquez, David Alaba, Jesus Vallejo, Nacho, Alvaro Odriozola, Toni Kroos, Dani Ceballos, and Mariano Diaz, will have a two-week rest.
Once they return to Valdebebas, they’ll carry out a mini pre-season with Pintus. Additionally, they will practice games with the Castilla reinforcements.
The post-World Cup plan
LaLiga resumes play 10 days after the World Cup final, which is on December 18. Thus Ancelotti is clear that the internationals won’t be present for the first few days of action.
The coaching team will thoroughly assess each player’s situation, minutes played, and days spent away from home. No matter the calendar, the coaching staff wants to give the international players time to recover and prepare for the season, as some players might not return until mid-January.
“It is likely that we will have to play until mid-January with the players who stay here,” Ancelotti said on Saturday, giving some clue about his plans.
What would be Madrid’s starting XI?
Kroos and Alaba will seek to make the non-internationals a strong bunch under Ancelotti’s guidance as he has unwavering faith in his team. Castilla will probably need to lose some of its attacking players, Iker Bravo and Sergio Arribas in particular, because Madrid have the issue that practically all of the players who will stay at Madrid are defenders.
“We will have to analyze it well,” insisted Ancelotti, obsessed with getting as many points as possible before the World Cup for what may happen afterwards.