Carlo Ancelotti defended Vinicius after the forward was involved in more heated exchanges with Mallorca‘s players in Real Madrid‘s 1-0 LaLiga defeat at Son Moix, saying “the only thing Vinicius wants to do is play football.”
“Everything that’s happening isn’t Vinicius’ fault,” Ancelotti said in his postmatch news conference. “The only thing that Vinicius wants to do is play football. Beyond that, there’s an atmosphere. Opponents put pressure on him, they provoke him, they foul him.
“I think the focus has to change. Everyone thinks it’s Vinicius’ fault, but we have to look at the game today and what happened.”
Madrid would fall eight points behind leaders Barcelona if they beat relegation-threatened Sevilla at Camp Nou.
“It’s a defeat that hurts a lot,” Ancelotti said. “But it was the game we expected and we prepared for it, a difficult game with a lot of fouls, a lot of stoppages… We didn’t play badly, especially in the second half. Conceding early affected us a lot, and we missed a penalty.”
He added: “We’ll fight for the league until the end. It isn’t over yet. There are a lot of games left, and what happened to us today can happen in any game.”
Ancelotti said goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois would undergo medical tests on Monday after pulling out of the Mallorca game in the warm-up.
Madrid travel to Morocco this week to compete in the Club World Cup, starting with Wednesday’s semifinal against Al Ahly.