Ancelotti a good match for Real Madrid
Published: 05.07.13 / Written by: David Gold
Carlo Ancelotti has finally been appointed the new Real Madrid coach after over a month of waiting.
The Italian had requested to leave Paris St Germain after guiding them to the French title, and it was widely reported that he was the choice to take over at Real Madrid, replacing the controversial outgoing coach Jose Mourinho.
Ancelotti has finally been confirmed and unveiled as Real Madrid coach and is under no illusions as to the task ahead. And the way he deflected a question about Mourinho is typical of why Real have appointed him, and why he could be a perfect fit at Real.
"I respect Mourinho a lot but we are different," he said. "He has his character, mine is different. Our situations cannot be compared."
Designed not to alienate Mourinho supporters, it was also what those who despised the Portuguese, and there were many like that, wanted to hear. This coach would be different – he wouldn’t behave in the bizarre and frustrating way that Jose Mourinho had. Yet there is a similarity between the two coaches. They have both won the Champions League twice. Mourinho has won league titles in Portugal, England, Italy and Spain. Ancelotti has won in Italy, England and France. They are both accustomed to lifting titles wherever they are. In many ways, Ancelotti is just like Mourinho, only nicer and with teams who play better football.
That is why he seems the ideal coach for Real Madrid. He has his own philosophy, and tends to prefer a 4-3-2-1 system, but is pragmatic and open to the ideas of the club he is with and will adapt to the players he has available. At AC Milan he used a kind of diamond, and his team was narrow, with Andrea Pirlo dictating play from the base of midfield. At Chelsea he tried a similar system but changed to a 4-2-3-1, and at Paris St Germain he eventually settled on a version of 4-4-2 to suit Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s immense talents.
At Real, Ancelotti may well use the 4-2-3-1 again, if his words after appointment are anything to go by. "The challenge is very clear," he said, "the most prestigious club in the world obliges us to try to win playing spectacular football." He then explained: "I want a team that controls the play, that has a nice idea of attacking football, that has good balance. I don't think it will be difficult to play offensive football with lots of possession."
And so this is Ancelotti. Almost too nice for the modern game, yet Ancelotti thrives. Such an uncontroversial character, few could dislike him the way the masses despise Mourinho. And he gets on well with the most interfering of owners, having thrived under Silvio Berlusconi at AC Milan, Roman Abramovich at Chelsea and the Qatari royalty in charge of Paris St Germain. Florentino Perez should have an ideal manager to work with. With a track record of success wherever he goes, the ability to adapt and his record in Europe, Ancelotti seems the ideal choice for Real, and the perfect man to take a great club whose name has been sullied in recent times forward into a better future.