Tactical Insights

‘Ancelotti More Important Than Mbappe’ Real Madrid: Barcelona Legend


Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti is more important at the club than new arrival Kylian Mbappe according to ex-FC Barcelona coach Louis Van Gaal, who explained this belief to Spanish newspaper El Periodico.

Mbappe’s free transfer from Paris Saint-Germain to Los Blancos was announced over a fortnight ago, and Ancelotti will have a job on his hands trying to fit the Frenchman into a talent-packed front line which many feel doesn’t need tinkering with after helping lift the treble last term.

Asked about Mbappe’s arrival to such an outfit, Van Gaal said: ” What I think is that the coach is always more important than any star.”

“Real Madrid has the best coach in the world, and they will be able to manage Mbappe’s arrival as they have done so far with the rest of the great players they have in the team.”

On if Madrid actually needs Mbappe given the success it has already achieved over the last couple of years on Ancelotti’s watch, Van Gaal said: “You always need creative players.”

“Above defenders, midfielders or forwards, creative players are needed. That ability is more important than anything else, and he has it [creativity].

“What I can say is that Madrid now have a good coach and a great president. In my time Florentino Perez was very criticized and now he is the best at managing a club,” Van Gaal added.

For Van Gaal, who has managed in his native the Netherlands, Spain, England and Germany at top clubs, there is no doubt about which boasts the strongest domestic championship.

“I think the Spanish league is still the best in the world,” Van Gaal said.

“I’ve been thinking about it since I arrived here a long time ago to coach Barcelona, and I still see it that way.

“In the Premier League there is a lot of pace, a lot of pressure, more than in Spain, but here the technical and tactical level is still higher. And I like this way of approaching football better.

“In addition to this, I think that the results prove us right. Spain has many teams that have been European champions in the last 20 years, and England almost never. And that is also noticeable in the national team,” Van Gaal concluded on this.



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