Carlo Ancelotti knows Real Madrid are in a commanding position to qualify for the Champions League semi-finals after a 3-1 first-leg win over Chelsea, but insists the tie is not done yet.
The Real Madrid boss made the touchline after testing negative for Covid-19 and saw his side clinch an emphatic win at Stamford Bridge on Wednesday night.
Karim Benzema’s hat-trick downed Chelsea as he punished defensive mistakes. Kai Havertz pulled a goal back, but Chelsea was wasteful in front of the goal.
It leaves Chelsea with an uphill battle heading to the Bernabeu next week for the return leg, with Real having one foot in the semi-finals.
Tuchel doesn’t believe Chelsea are still in tie, replying “no” on if the tie is still alive.
But Ancelotti insists it’s not over yet, leaving the door open to a shock Chelsea comeback in Madrid next week.
What Carlo Ancelotti said
“Played well. Good control of the game, good build-up from the back, dangerous counterattack. It was a good night but it is only the first half of this round,” the Real Madrid boss told BT Sport post-match.
“It was really good. We showed good organisation defensively. We had a fantastic performance up front from Benzema. A good performance.
“We have an advantage. We have to prepare for the next game in the league and then Tuesday will be another game. Also, we have a lot of respect for this team who were the winners of the last Champions League. Next game, you never know.”
Benzema underlines claim for being best number nine in the world
At this stage, we’re running out of superlatives for a man who, at 34, is playing the best football of an already phenomenal career. His three goals at Stamford Bridge came from four attempts (he’ll be kicking himself about the one that got away). When his second goal went in he was on an implausible run of five goals in 52 Champions League minutes.
Benzema then became the fourth player after Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Luiz Adriano to score back-to-back hat-tricks in Europe’s top competition. Robert Lewandowski and Erling Haaland make compelling cases, but is there any number nine in world football who you would rather have in your team right now?
Chelsea vs. Real Madrid final score
Goals: Benzema (Vinicius) — 21st min.
Benzema (Modric) — 24th min.
Havertz (Jorginho) — 40th min.
Benzema — 46th min.