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The five differences between Ancelotti and Zidane… So far


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Zinedine Zidane learnt under Carlo Ancelotti as a coach and the Italian was a clear inspiration for him, but while they have their similarities, Ancelotti is showing in the start to this season that his Real Madrid have some differences too.

It’s clear that Ancelotti has evolved and is no longer as similar to Zidane as he once was.

Here we go over five key differences we’ve seen from Ancelotti so far at the start of the 2021/22 season.

Faith in Vinicius

Brazilian winger Vinicius Junior was often a starter under Zidane but he never fully convinced the Frenchman. Now, under the new coach, Vini Jr looks a different player.

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While the 21-year-old was still on holiday during the summer, Ancelotti called him to let him know he was a bit part of his plans, regardless of whether Kylian Mbappe came or not.

Vinicius is repaying that faith and looks a more confident and complete player, perhaps liberated by the clear backing given to him by the coach, whereas under Zidane he played with a guillotine constantly hanging over him.

Different players respond to different motivational techniques and it seems Carletto knows how to get the best out of Vinicius who is starting to look like a real star.

Zidane more solid defensively

In Zidane‘s final season, even though he came away empty handed, results were nevertheless remarkable. From February to May the team lost just one game – at Stamford Bridge – and becoming a solid unit who, despite many defensive injuries, proved difficult to break down.

While both Ancelotti and Zidane favour an attack-minded approach, the Italian still needs to make his team a little tighter at the back.

Under Zidane, the offensive threat wasn’t as impressive, but Real Madrid also conceded fewer chances. Ancelotti has sacrificed a bit of control in favour of a more dynamic approach.

Carletto has brought back Pintus

Zidane was the one who initially hired Antonio Pintus as a fitness coach but their relationship deteriorated and he left when Zidane returned for his second spell in charge.

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Now Ancelotti has brought Pintus back into the fold and the results are plain to see: Los Blancos are more energetic this season, but the injury problems they had hoped to reduce remain the same.

Younger and less of the old guard

The French coach sometimes puzzled those at the club with his decisions regarding younger players and there was a clash between Real Madrid‘s policy and Zidane‘s loyalty to the old guard.

Ancelotti’s arrival has seen the team rejuvenated as the Italian has put his trust in younger players and made it clear that, as well as Vini Jr, Fede Valverde has a big role to play in a midfield that needed some young legs, which the arrival of Eduardo Camavinga should also help with.

The Italian’s decision to field Miguel Gutierrez ahead of Marcelo and his stance on Eden Hazard, no longer untouchable, further show his commitment to looking to the future.

The case of Gareth Bale

Zidane was in no doubt as soon as he returned to Real Madrid: he didn’t want to see Gareth Bale again and he pushed to get him out of the club.

Ancelotti inherited Bale and immediately showed himself open to giving him another chance, which the Welshman was beginning to take before breaking down injured again





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