Ancelotti: I’m no pushover

Despite Real holding a two-point lead at the top of La Liga, Ancelotti has been criticised for their lull in form since the Christmas break and he has also been accused of being too soft on the players.

“I have felt supported by the club since the first day I arrived,” Ancelotti, who took charge of the club in 2013 having previously led AC Milan to two Champions League titles, said.

“I have a lot of experience. I have been coaching for many years and with this ‘weak’ arm of mine I have managed to win three Champions Leagues.”

Fans have become used to Real sweeping aside the opposition as they did during their Spanish record 22-match winning streak at the end of 2014.

But there was discontent among the Bernabeu faithful after a 1-1 draw with Villarreal last weekend and the substitution of Isco for Asier Illarramendi prompted a chorus of whistles.

“I have had a normal week and we are preparing well for tomorrow’s game,” said Ancelotti.

??”I am used to criticism, this was not the first time and it won’t be the last either but it won’t change my attitude. I have full confidence in the team and I will repeat that I would make the same substitution again.”