Real Madrid Ready to Strike: Copa del Rey match Set to be a Blow to Barcelona’s Confidence

Real Madrid mas­ter­mind Car­lo Ancelot­ti is already plan­ning a big oper­a­tion against Barcelona.

Time, place, and pur­pose: to demor­al­ize a fierce rival.

While defeat­ing Barcelona in the first leg of the Copa del Rey semi-final at the San­ti­a­go Bern­abéu on Thurs­day is the main objec­tive, Ancelot­ti also wants to deal a men­tal blow to the club.

Step 1: Seize the Oppor­tu­ni­ty
Xavi Hernán­dez’s 1–0 loss to Almería gave Real Madrid hopes of a LaLi­ga San­tander comeback.

Barcelona had the chance to extend their lead to 10 points, but no one expect­ed them to lose.

The mis­take cost them a lot as they came out on the field lack­ing the inten­si­ty and pas­sion need­ed to make the game work.

The Madrid der­by at the San­ti­a­go Bern­abéu end­ed in a 1–1 draw, nar­row­ing the gap to sev­en points. The Whites, who nev­er give up, want to seize the chance to under­mine his rivals’ con­fi­dence at the most impor­tant moment of the season.

15 games to go, 45 points and a poten­tial­ly deci­sive date.

The first step in Ancelot­ti’s plan begins here. Real Madrid have a lot of ‘winnable’ games in LaLi­ga San­tander, but in addi­tion to the Copa del Rey, they still have to fin­ish the Cham­pi­ons League against Liv­er­pool and could spend anoth­er night in Europe after that. There­fore, accu­mu­la­tion of tour­na­ments is a dif­fi­cult issue.

Step 2: Demor­al­ize Barcelona
Ancelot­ti’s mis­sion is to break the hearts of Athlgrana’s players.

It’s a direct attack on their pride at the worst moment of the sea­son for Xav­i’s team.

The Copa match between Real Madrid and Barcelona on Thurs­day is more than just a Clási­co, it is a match that could decide the futures of both teams in both competitions.

And there lies the most basic part of the Ital­ian direc­tor’s sec­ond step. The mis­sion giv­en to the play­ers is to pre­vent a los­ing streak that would erode the con­fi­dence of their opponents.

But like all ideas, his log­ic is some­times flawed.

Ancelot­ti’s side went 42–27, while Xav­i’s had 37 wins.

But Almería’s vic­to­ry may have changed the momen­tum. Real Madrid will want to keep the momen­tum going with a win on Thurs­day night.

Step 3: Ancelot­ti’s final trick
In order to suc­ceed in a grand plan, it must always end with an unpre­dictable move.

Ancelot­ti does­n’t reveal much about the squad for the match and keeps his card to himself.

Vini­cius is clear­ly the leader of the oper­a­tion, and it’s pos­si­ble that Rodri­go will return to the team and par­tic­i­pate in the oper­a­tion. How­ev­er, it is unknown who will start.

Good news for the Ital­ian coach. What’s more, their oppo­nents are in a cri­sis of injuries, with Pedri, Robert Lewandows­ki and Ous­mane Dem­bélé, three of the most influ­en­tial play­ers in the squad missing.

Real Madrid’s mad­ness is backed up by com­pelling stats: Barcelon­a’s LaLi­ga San­tander score is 90 per cent with Pedri, 57 with­out the Canari­an. % only.

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