Luka Modric and Toni Kroos are prepared for reduced playing time.
The veteran duo has slipped down the hierarchy.
Carlo Ancelotti has confirmed that Modric will start the match.
Real Madrid’s iconic midfield pair, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos, are unperturbed by reduced playing time this season, as they were prepared for this scenario.
Since their inaugural appearance together in the UEFA Super Cup 2014 final against Sevilla, where Kroos made his debut, they have held undisputed positions as starters for Los Blancos.
Their significant roles were pivotal during Madrid’s most successful period in the 21st century, securing five UEFA Champions League titles within eight years, including an impressive three consecutive wins. However, as Modric approaches his 38th birthday this September and Kroos is set to turn 35 next year, their tenure at the Spanish club is winding down.
With the recruitment of a fresh midfield contingent comprising Federico Valverde, Eduardo Camavinga, Jude Bellingham, and Aurelien Tchouameni, the veteran duo has slipped down the hierarchy.
Carlo Ancelotti, Madrid’s head coach, had already communicated to these two UCL champions that their involvement would be reduced in the current season. Both players are displaying patience and enthusiasm for their opportunities, aiming to continue contributing.
Kroos has accumulated more minutes on the field than Modric across the initial two league matches of the season. He recently started in the 3-1 victory against Almeria. In contrast, Modric is yet to make his first start this season. The 37-year-old is anticipated to initiate the match against Celta Vigo on August 25th, likely partnering with Tchouameni, Bellingham, and possibly Camavinga.
During a pre-match press conference, Ancelotti provided insights into what Madrid supporters can anticipate in the upcoming clash against Celta Vigo.
“Kepa will start tomorrow,” the Italian confirmed. “Bellingham as the attacking midfielder? He has adapted very well. He’s very smart. His movements without the ball are elite.”
He spoke about the rumors linking Modric to Saudi Arabia and affirmed that the Croatian soccer player will remain with the current team.
“Luka has already decided to stay here. He’s not happy he’s not playing but he will have minutes. He will help us during the season.”
He also discussed the reason behind Tchouameni’s absence in the previous season following the 2022 World Cup. This situation was concerning for numerous fans who were eager to watch the talented French midfielder in play.
“Tchouameni got injured after the World Cup and it was difficult for him to recover last season. Now he has returned to his pre-World Cup level.”
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