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REAL MADRID-ATLÉTICO

Zidane must stay, whatever happens - Ancelotti

In his column for Sina Sports, the ex-Real boss also gave his thoughts on the derby: "It'll be a battle. I think Madrid will win, but it won't be easy."

Update:
Zidane must stay, whatever happens - Ancelotti
Gerard Julien / AFP

Former Real Madrid head coach Carlo Ancelotti has given his backing to current boss Zinedine Zidane in his column for Chinese media outlet Sina Sports.

The Italian, under whom Zidane worked as Real assistant in the 2013-14 season, also discussed the side's costly stalemate against Málaga - a result that leaves the capital outfit nine points adrift of La Liga leaders Barcelona - and looked ahead to their derby clash with Atlético Madrid on Saturday.

Real draw with Málaga: "Yes, I guessed what result Madrid would come away with. It's not that I'm a prophet: I based my prediction on Atlético Madrid and Barcelona's matches there [at La Rosaleda]. Atlético lost and, though Luis Enrique's men won, they were made to work really hard. In fact, that game should have ended in a draw. Madrid are having difficulties away from home: we saw that against Real Betis, at Granada, where they snatched an exciting late victory... Málaga are a very compact side; they didn't give up any space against Real Madrid."

Derby against Atleti: "There's no doubt that it'll be a battle. I think that Madrid will win at the Bernabéu, but it won't be easy."

Are Los Blancos' chances of winning La Liga over? "The draw leaves Real Madrid at a greater disadvantage in the title race but, as Zidane said, Madrid never give up. In the European Cup they're in good shape; they've just beaten Roma [in the first leg of the last 16] and they're a strong contender for the trophy."

Zidane: "The Champions League isn't easy; it requires a huge amount of effort and a high degree of focus, and you have very little room for error. You also need a bit of luck. Regardless of how things turn out come the end of the campaign, Zidane should remain as coach next season."

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