TOOn Saturday, Real Madrid broke nothing less than a world record, they said carlo anceloti. “We have four centre-backs in the squad and they are all injured.” The Italian has been worried since December, when David Alaba tore his cruciate ligament, but he has always found a solution. On Saturday, FC Girona went to the Santiago Bernabéu, the surprise team in the League that had not yet lost a game away from home.

Which has the best forward in the league with 52 goals and also one of the best forwards in the Ukrainian Dovbyk. He has 14 goals to his name, five of which he scored with headers. Nobody expected the score to end 4-0 in the end. The blaugranas did not have a single opportunity. And Ancelotti's new key to defensive strength is Aurélien Tchouaméni.

“It will bother him if I say this, but he is a spectacular centre-back. “He is as good as few when it comes to building the game and tactically he is very intelligent,” the coach said before and he was not right. Along with the 24-year-old Frenchman he placed the winger Carvajal, who at 173 centimeters is really a dwarf for the center back position, but thanks to the good positional play of the entire team, the rivals did not get a single shot. Saturday's goal.

“Playing the piano helps me”

Previously, Tchouaméni had not only trained the position on the field, but also at home with virtual glasses with which he repeatedly simulated his game. “This makes me better in training and in games. I can vary the intensity. “It improves my vision of the field in front of and behind me and helps me make the right decisions under pressure,” said the Frenchman in an interview with “El País” when he was still playing as a defensive midfielder. He also revealed that he had discovered the piano as mental balance. “Playing the piano helps me stay focused,” said the Frenchman.

Tchouaméni is used to changing positions. In his youth at Girondins de Bordeaux, this Frenchman, the son of Cameroonian parents, was still a striker. But little by little he became more defensive. Madrid brought him from Monaco for 80 million euros two years ago as the successor to Brazilian Casemiro. Actually, he was supposed to carefully take on this role at that time, but then Casemiro unexpectedly left for Manchester United, probably also due to financial consideration on the part of Real, who received a transfer fee of 70 million euros for the then 30 year old Brazilian. .

Now Tchouaméni retreated even further and attacked. Girona a perfect game. And the team “made necessity a virtue.” This is what Ancelotti expressed after the game. “We play with humility. “Everyone assumed their defensive tasks with a lot of commitment,” said the coach, visibly satisfied, and spoke of the best game of the season.

Good footballers don't like to run after them, explained the Italian, “but when the opponent has the ball, that is necessary. Today everyone sacrificed themselves, including Vinícius, Bellingham and Rodrygo. That is humility.”

In these conditions, Vinícius is truly the best in the world in his position, Ancelotti told his striker on the same day that the newspapers once again reported on an imminent transfer of Kylian Mbappé to Madrid. The 23-year-old Brazilian surprised everyone on several occasions with unusual actions.

Star team: Real Madrid will face Leipzig in the Champions League on Tuesday.

Star team: Real Madrid will face Leipzig in the Champions League on Tuesday.

Image: AFP

He made it 1-0 with a powerful, effortless shot from the edge of the penalty area, and made it 2-0 with a wide, open pass to Bellingham. Only one of his famous dribbles preceded the 3-0 victory. Bellingham then scored his second goal.

Before the 4-0, Rodrygo did not let the ball reach him when he dribbled down the field. In addition to humility, Real also has a lot of talent in the squad, Ancelotti analyzed. In the end, Vinícius' rival in Girona, Yan Couto, left the field crying.

At the press conference after the game, a Cuban journalist pointed out that real Madrid on Tuesday, just one day before Valentine's Day, “the day of lovers”, for the round of 16 of the Champions League in Leipzig. Ancelotti said that he was really happy to compete again in his favorite competition, but at the same time warned. In Leipzig the use of Rüdiger is at risk again and Bellingham could also be cancelled. “We already lost there once,” Ancelotti said, recalling the 3-2 loss in the group stage last season. However, Tchouaméni did not yet play in central defense.