Real Madrid boss Ancelotti warns against writing off superstars

Carlo Ancelotti has warned those writing off Erling Haaland and Kylian Mbappé, as well as Real Madrid midfielder Jude Bellingham to “watch out” for the superstars.

Bellingham, Haaland and Mbappé were all criticised after their Champions League performances this week.

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Bellingham and Haaland both drew a blank in Madrid’s 3-3 draw with City at the Bernabéu, while Mbappé failed to score in Paris Saint-Germain‘s 3-2 home loss to Barcelona.

Bellingham enjoyed an explosive start to life in LaLiga — scoring 13 goals in his first 13 games in Spain — but the midfielder’s rate of goals has dropped since, only finding the net in two of Madrid’s games in 2024.

“What’s dropped off is Bellingham’s goals,” Ancelotti said in a news conference on Friday ahead of Madrid’s LaLiga game with Mallorca.

“They were a surprise for everyone, scoring 20 goals. Now he’s doing his job. He’s an attacking midfielder, a playmaker. He isn’t a centre forward. The goals have dropped off a bit, but his performance hasn’t.

“I don’t think he’s lacking anything, just scoring goals. Sooner or later, he’ll score again.”

Bellingham suffered an ankle injury which kept him out of action in February, and missed a game through suspension in March for collecting five yellow cards.

Ancelotti warned against writing off the England star — as well as Haaland and Mbappé — on the basis of just one game.

“We have to stay calm,” Ancelotti said.

“Maybe these big stars weren’t at their best in the first legs, but there are other games [to come]. Watch out for Haaland, Mbappé and Bellingham.”

Forward Rodrygo — who scored against City on Tuesday — didn’t train on Friday, but Ancelotti said he would be available to face Mallorca, while defender Éder Militão, who has just returned from an ACL tear, could also feature.

“[Rodrygo] got a knock yesterday but he’ll be available,” Ancelotti said.

“I think all of the squad is available, they’ve all recovered. They’re all available and I’ll pick the best team, Militao included.”