Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti has opened up about his time in charge of Real Madrid managing some of football’s biggest superstars including Cristiano Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane
During Ancelotti’s second season in charge, Ronaldo scored 61 goals in just 54 appearances, the Juventus star’s best return in a single season.
Speaking to Sky Sports about what it was like to manage the Portuguese superstar, Ancelotti said: “You don’t have to build a team around Cristiano Ronaldo, you have to put them in the more comfortable way on the pitch.
“I don’t think you have to build strict tactics with this player defensively because there are players who are more involved in the attacking phase and there are players who have to be involved more in the defensive phase.
“Of course, they have to work together because the team is the most important part of the game, but strikers like Ronaldo who are able to score every single game, you don’t have to give too much information defensively.
“It is the easiest way to be a manager, to manage a fantastic player because they are professional, they are serious, they have personality, they are motivated so it is the easiest way.”
Ancelotti didn’t leave out what it was like managing Zinedine Zidane at Juventus, adding: “With Zidane, I tried to change my idea about the system. Zidane is the first player who gave me the possibility to change the system and play in a different way.
“So when I had Zidane, in the first year at Juventus, I played with a system of 3-4-1-2, having [Alessandro] Del Piero and [Filippo] Inzaghi up front and Zidane a little bit behind.
“The second year, I played with a back four but keeping two strikers in front and one No10 like Zidane.
”Zidane changed my idea about football, I was so focused before Juventus on 4-4-2 and after with Zidane, I changed, I wanted to put him in the best position for him to let him be more comfortable on the pitch.”