Why Ancelotti spoke to Kroos and Marcelo while reflecting on substitution

epa09425433 Real Madrid's head coach Carlo Ancelotti reacts during the Spanish LaLiga soccer match between Levante UD and Real Madrid at Ciutat de Valencia stadium in Valencia, esastern Spain, 22 August 2021. EPA-EFE/Biel Alino

Carlo Ancelotti allegedly asked Real Madrid veterans who he should sub on at extra time, but one of the reasons why he spoke to Toni Kroos and Marcelo before introducing Jesus Vallejo was to count how many substitutions he had already made.

Some Italian media and Mundo Deportivo are reporting a quote from Toni Kroos, which has been taken from a Twitter account with no mention of the primary source.

The tweet shows a video of Ancelotti, Kroos and Marcelo taking on the touchline during the second leg of the Champions League semis against Manchester City last night, with Jesus Vallejo ready to come on as a substitute.

“Ancelotti asked for the opinion of the experienced players on who he should sub on at extra time,” Kroos allegedly said.

“This situation describes him perfectly as a coach and is why he works so well with the team.”

However, one of the reasons why Ancelotti spoke to his veterans was to count how many substitutions he had already made. Five subs are allowed in Champions League games, plus one in extra time. Ancelotti clearly wanted to avoid wasting one of the most incredible comebacks in the history of the game by making one more sub.

This was reported by Prime Video Italia’s pitch reporter Alessandro Alciato during the game. Alciato is also the author of Ancelotti’s official biography.

Former Roma coach Paulo Fonseca didn’t do the same last season when he wrongly made too many subs in a Coppa Italia game against Spezia. The Giallorossi lost on the pitch but would have lost the game by default.

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