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Monday 19. February 2024 - 11:33

Carlo Ancelotti hits back at claims Real Madrid are 'distracted' by Kylian Mbappe

Carlo Ancelotti has denied claims his Real Madrid side have been distracted by the uncertainty surrounding Kylian Mbappe's future.

Mbappe has confirmed his decision to leave Paris Saint-Germain this summer and Madrid are the overwhelming favourites to secure his signature, with reports in Spain even stating an agreement has been reached already.

With all that going on away from the pitch, Madrid fell to a frustrating 1-1 draw with Rayo Vallecano on Sunday, leaving their lead at the top of the La Liga standings at six points - second-placed Girona also have a game in hand.

Many players were criticised after the game for a perceived drop in performance but Ancelotti insisted his side's showing had nothing to do with Mbappe.

"When have we not been focused?" he said when asked if Mbappe had distracted his side. "We are always focused, today too. To scold this team for something this season is very difficult."

This weekend was also an interesting one for Mbappe, who was dropped to the bench for PSG's 2-0 win over Nantes - the first game since news of his decision to leave the club was made public.

He came off the bench to score a late penalty, after which manager Luis Enrique played down suggestions Mbappe had been dropped because of his transfer decision.

"It's both very simple and very complicated to explain," he told reporters. "We have just played a Champions League match. And given the energy displayed, I think it was important to give playing time to players who had not played."

"We have an ambitious goal, that of being able to fight in all competitions until the end to win titles. We therefore need all the players, including five or six players who did not play as starters on Wednesday."

Provided by: Frank Henriksen
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