Real Madrid have brought Carlo Ancelotti back into the fold as the manager to succeed Zinedine Zidane, marking the second time in a row in which Los Blancos have gone back to a former coach. There are positives to doing this in terms of stability, but there are also concerns regarding the future of the squad.
The most immediate questions for Ancelotti now that he’s taken the position are related to the transfer market. Which Real Madrid standouts could be more likely to leave the club? Who is getting a lifeline? Gareth Bale? And which transfers could be coming in?
With regards to the final of those questions, the first name on the tip of the tongues of fans around the world is “James Rodriguez“. He is something of a teacher’s pet to Ancelotti, given that he’s worked with the three-time Champions League-winning manager at Real Madrid, Bayern Munich, and now Everton.
However, that run of teams could end with Everton. COPE’s Miguel Angel Diaz reports that Carlo Ancelotti is not expected to ask Real Madrid to repurchase James Rodriguez, who fell out of favor with Zinedine Zidane in 2019-2020 despite being Real’s most efficient chance-creator.
Real Madrid fans should not expect a James Rodriguez transfer
Things could change as the summer transfer window develops, but we should heed the report from COPE and not expect any James and Ancelotti reunion, no matter how much the rumor mill tries to twirl us in that direction.
James is still a quality player and has shown his quality as more of a focal point for the Toffees this season under Ancelotti. But has he really done enough to blow away Madridistas and sway the club into buying him back? I have my doubts.
Furthermore, if the logic is that Ancelotti wants James to be his No. 10, why not just stick with the more promising Martin Odegaard? Surely, Ancelotti kept up with Odegaard’s performances in 2019-2020 at Real Sociedad. Odegaard is one hell of a talent, is free to Real Madrid, and could break out to a whole new level under the tutelage of the player-friendly – and creator-friendly – Ancelotti in 2021-2022.
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I think it is safe for Madridistas to cross James’ name off the list of possible Ancelotti signings, in case they had him written on their list in the first place. The idea sounds nice on paper and invokes some nostalgia, but it’s speculation that does not make sense under scrutiny.