Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti praises "fantastic" LA Galaxy ahead of exhibition meeting in Arizona
New Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti had good things to say about the LA Galaxy — his club's opening foe in the International Champions Cup exhibition tournament that begins this weekend — during a conference call with media on Friday morning.
The Italian manager, who won the French Ligue 1 title with former Galaxy star David Beckham last year at Paris Saint-Germain, provided few specifics but praised the organization and its players.
“The Galaxy is a good team,” he said in English. “I have seen them play, it's a good team, they're experienced. And so, of course, they don't have David Beckham, they lost something but continue to be a good team.”
Real Madrid and the Galaxy meet on Aug. 1 in a first-round game in Glendale, Ariz., and then will face Juventus or Everton on Aug. 3 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. Final-round games are slated for Aug. 6 and 7 at Sun Life Stadium near Miami.
Valencia play at home against AC Milan in Saturday's tournament opener, and the remainder of the games will be played in the US. Chelsea and Inter Milan also are competing. Ancelotti has previously led Juventus, Milan, Chelsea and Juventus, winning league titles with the latter two.
“They [have] good experience, they are fantastic players,” he said. “The fact that they [have played] in Europe means that they proved their experience. It would be nice to meet them, and we have to play.”
Asked about his knowledge of the Galaxy's roster, Ancelotti said he hadn't “seen in the last month them play, so I cannot answer this question.”
The Galaxy have faced Real Madrid on four occasions, in 2005 and the past three summers when Mourinho led the Merengues. Real have won all four, outscoring LA 14-4.
Ancelotti doesn't expect Real Madrid to be markedly different now that he's the boss.
“Of course, it may change a little bit, but this team already has its players and style,” he said in Spanish. “We will look to play an offensive brand of soccer, which is normal for the team, and look to do the best as possible.”