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Ancelotti confirms Lunin will play Elche Cup tie, not Courtois

Real Madrid face Elche in the Round of 16 on Thursday. Aside from looking ahead to the tie, the coach also spoke about Bale, Hazard and paid tribute to Paco Gento.

Ancelotti confirms Lunin will play Elche Cup tie, not Courtois

Carlo Ancelotti answered questions from the media ahead of tomorrow's Copa del Rey Last 16 tie against Elche. He also gave updates on the situation concerning Gareth Bale and Eden Hazard - neither of whom played a part in Madrid's recent Super Cup success.

The coach began his press conference with a few words for former Madrid player Paco Gento, who passed away on Tuesday: "An unique figure, who will always remain in our hearts".

Important Cup tie: "It's another final, in a competition which we have high hopes. We are ready and prepared, and we will need to be. Elche are in a good dynamic, they've won seven of their last 10 games. We'll need to be very careful, play well and win. Courtois has suffered an unexpected setback and won't play the game. We have other players who are out as well, everyone else is ready".

Gento: "I met him several times during my first spell at the club. I wasn't able to see him during this second spell, but yesterday I spoke to his wife and we had a long chat about him. What really stood out about him, apart from what he did out on the pitch, was his humility, he was a very simple person - the kind of people I really like".

Hazard: "Nothing's happened, there is competition for places and before every game I have to choose the best players. That affects a number of players in the squad, I can't deny that. Nothing in particular has gone on, he's been training and is waiting for a call from his coach. If he is called, he'll be ready".

Courtois ruled out: "He's not available, it's nothing serious, he'll be out for a few days, that's all. It's a private matter, I can't say any more than that. I think he'll be back for Sunday's game".

Bale: "He's fine, he didn't go to Saudi Arabia, he was working here, he's in the list, every player who is in the list is able to play".

Bale and Hazard hardly play: "It's simple, there's nothing weird between us, there is competition for a place and a coach, which is me, and for every game I choose the best to be as fair as I can. I choose the best to win the match. But what happens at big clubs is there is a lot of competition. I could talk about Nacho, Marcelo, Ceballos, Isco, Jovic... players with a lot of quality who are going through the same as Bale and Hazard".

Have they advised Hazard not to undergo surgery so he can be sold? "We haven't spoken about that, honestly, I don't know, it's not an issue which I have discussed with the doctor, he would have told me. The whole issue with the metal plate is forgotten about now".


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