El Clasico: Carlo Ancelotti speaks out on Vinicius Jr after FIFA award snub for Real Madrid star
Carlo Ancelotti has freely admitted that Real Madrid have a dependency on Vinicius Jr ahead of facing Barcelona in a Copa del Rey Clasico.
The Brazilian winger is once again in the spotlight after Los Blancos fans were furious that he missed out on a spot in the FIFPRO World XI at this week’s awards ceremony, despite capping a fine 2022 by scoring the winner in the Champions League final.
Ancelotti is focused on Vinicius taking on Barcelona in a “fun” duel down Madrid’s left wing on Thursday.
“Real Madrid have a dependency on Vinicius Jr and that is a good dependency to have because he is one of the best players in the world right now,” he told reporters.
“I see depending on Vinicius as a normal thing for us, he is one of the biggest in the world today.
“I don't need to give him any extra advice. We won't change who we are. He will be facing a tough challenge against Ronald Araujo and I think it's going to be a fun one. I hope he wins.”
Barcelona boss Xavi also spoke highly of Vinicius as he prepares for the semi-final first leg.
“Vinicius is making a difference,” noted the Spanish coach. “He is an exceptional player and has added goals to his arsenal. He is a player that you have to follow closely, he is at a very high level.
“It would be great for us winning on Thursday at Santiago Bernabeu. But we are facing a great rival... they are the favourites.”