A host of Real Madrid players including Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale have reportedly made it publicly clear that they do not want to see Los Blancos chief Florentino Perez let Carlo Ancelotti go this summer.
The veteran Italian coach, who has won major trophies with the likes of AC Milan and Chelsea, last year guided Real to their fabled La Decima, beating Atletico Madrid in the final on the way.
However this campaign has been a different story, with Real to finish the term without any silverware after losing out on La Liga to Barcelona and suffering a relatively surprise defeat to Juventus in the Champions League final.
Despite that though reports in Spain, carried by the Daily Mirror, suggest that Ronaldo, Bale and Germany star Toni Kroos don’t want to see Ancelotti given his marching orders by Perez, who is a notoriously demanding president. It’s believed Perez doesn’t see eye to eye with Real’s manager and is keen to replace him with someone else at the next available opportunity.
If he does though he’ll risk the wrath of a collection of the Santiago Bernabeu’s highest earners, including golden boy Ronaldo, which could be enough to stay the Spaniard’s hand.
Word on the grapevine is that the former Manchester United superstar, who is far and away Real’s most popular player, wants to continue working with Ancelotti, whilst Kroos is confident that the 55-year-old is the right man to help him develop.
Meanwhile Bale, who by all accounts is struggling himself in the Spanish capital, also came out in support of his manager, and the trio were joined by defensive stalwarts Marcelo and Pepe, both of whom have been at the club for eight years.
If nothing else the backing will give Perez food for thought if he doesn’t want to risk facing a player backlash akin to the one he suffered when he sold Mesut Ozil in 2013. On that occasion high-profile figures such as Ronaldo and Xabi Alonso - now at Bayern Munich - vented their frustrations, and in particular with Ronaldo Perez will want to avoid upsetting the apple-cart.
Just who Real would hire to replace Ancelotti if the Italian is let go remains to be seen, although Borussia Dortmund boss Jurgen Klopp, who is leaving this summer, is an obvious candidate, as is under fire Napoli coach Rafael Benitez.
The original plan was to have Zinedine Zidane moulded into Ancelotti’s heir, though the Castilla, who the Frenchman coaches, haven’t performed well this year, and the World Cup winner will need time to hone his skills.
Football fans, do you think Real will get rid of Ancelotti? Should they? If they do who can they draft in to replace him? Let us know your thoughts in the comments box below.