Ancelotti believes Real Madrid squad is 'better than last season'

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Real Madrid head coach Carlo Ancelotti has declared his squad as "better than last year", and suggested there will be no more arrivals at the Santiago Bernabeu in this transfer window.

Los Blancos won LaLiga and the Champions League in 2021-22, and have since added Antonio Rudiger from Chelsea and Aurelien Tchouameni from Monaco.

However, questions have been asked about a perceived lack of attacking options, with Luka Jovic having left for Fiorentina and doubts about the immediate future of Marco Asensio.

Madrid faced El Clasico rivals Barcelona on Saturday as part of their pre-season preparations in Las Vegas, losing 1-0 to a stunning Raphinha strike.

As well as the former Leeds United man, Barca have signed Robert Lewandowski from Bayern Munich to complete a formidable looking set of forward options ahead of the new campaign.

Madrid's star striker Karim Benzema was not involved, though Ancelotti confirmed the France international will return in their next outing against Club America.

When asked by reporters following the defeat to Barca if he needed another striker, Ancelotti replied: "The squad is closed and it is better than last year. Our two new arrivals are going to contribute a lot.

"There are 27 players, a lot of them, and training them is not easy, but the ones I have are intelligent and understand the difficulty I have."

On the futures of Asensio and midfielder Dani Ceballos, Ancelotti simply said it was "up to them" and "up to the club".

Eden Hazard started the game at Allegiant Stadium playing as a false nine in between Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo, and Ancelotti hinted that could be where the Belgian predominantly features in the coming season.

"He can play in several positions, it was seen last year," he said. "He has the quality to be false nine, but he has to get used to it."

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