In an interview with French TV station Canal Plus, Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti sounded off on the La Liga title race, which with just three points separating the top three, is shaping up to be the most exciting contest in years. Ancelotti’s men are currently out in front with 63 points from 25 games, three points ahead of both second-place Barcelona and third-place Atletico Madrid. This weekend’s marquee matchup sees Real head to Atletico on Sunday.
“It’s a very interesting League campaign, very exciting,” Ancelotti said. “There are three brave, strong sides battling for the title.” He went on to praise Real’s city rival: “It’s a surprise because I thought that it would be between Barcelona and Madrid but Atletico are doing a fantastic job. [Atletico] could perfectly play in any league. They know what their shortcomings are and they exploit their qualities: punishing their opponents on the counterattack or from set-pieces. They are an efficient team. Atletico is just like [Coach Diego] Simeone was when he was a player -- they give the maximum and play as a unit.”
The Italian tactician also praised Barcelona coach Gerardo Martino: “I like him, he’s doing well. His character is similar to mine,” Ancelotti said. “He doesn’t look for problems. His job isn’t easy because Barca are used to a strict style of play which has given them results.”