Madrid, May 21 (IANS) Former Real Madrid head coach Carlo Ancelotti has praised the football club’s star striker Cristiano Ronaldo’s professionalism and affirmed that money does not motivate the Portugal captain.
Ronaldo spent two years under Ancelotti’s wing at Real, and lifted the Champions League together in May 2014 before the coach was removed from his post 12 months later.
Ancelotti revealed in an interview with Financial Times on Friday that the former Manchester United striker would stay at the Real Madrid training base until 3 a.m. taking an ice bath, “even though he had (model and former partner) Irina Shayk waiting for him at home”.
“He does not care about money, he just wants to be the first,” the 56-year-old said.
Ancelotti added that not all players shared Ronaldo’s fanatical attention to detail.
The Italian, who will be taking over the reins at German club Bayern Munich when Pep Guardiola steps down to leave for Manchester City, admitted that some flexibility is essential for the job of coaching — as is cracking the whip when necessary.
“There are things where you can be elastic, and things where you must be strong. If the players say, ‘coach, we have a tough week, can we stay in bed one more hour?’ that is OK. But when I have a meeting before the game, you must be on time,” the AC Milan legend said.
“At Chelsea, we had a meeting at 10.30 a.m. and Didier Drogba was not there. I don’t know if it was traffic or what. He came at 11. He didn’t play,” Ancelotti concluded.