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Jun 6, 2013

Reports: Ancelotti nears Real switch

French media reported on Thursday that Carlo Ancelotti's protracted departure from Paris Saint-Germain and predicted arrival at Real Madrid is reaching its conclusion.

• Blog: Pressure on PSG

There had been precious little change in the situation since Ancelotti, 53, asked to be freed from the final year of his contract at the Parc des Princes on May 19.

However, with the re-election of Florentino Perez as Madrid president earlier this week and PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi reportedly having finally accepted he cannot retain the Italian, L'Equipe - echoing reports in Spanish counterpart Marca on Wednesday - claimed 'Ancelotti, very close to Real' while Le Parisien headlined its story: 'The Ancelotti case in the final straight'.

The French capital's daily reported Perez, a long-time admirer of Ancelotti, called PSG after his re-election on Tuesday to accelerate talks that began two weeks ago to negotiate Ancelotti's departure from the French capital. L'Equipe reported Madrid would have to pay €4 million to buy out Ancelotti's contract, while Le Parisien claimed it would take between €6 and €7 million.

Both papers agreed no date has yet been set for Ancelotti to sit down with Al Khelaifi to finalise the matter.

Perez, speaking to Onda Cero radio on Wednesday night, played down talk the Italian was on the verge of making the switch.

"Ancelotti is a great person," he said. "He was a great player, now coach - one of those who are able to win leagues, who know how to manage high level players... but he is at PSG so today he is not an option."

Perez had earlier indicated that Zinedine Zidane could yet succeed Jose Mourinho, and he added: "From next week with Zidane we will see.

"Everything is possible in life. PSG must do what they think is best. If the possibility of Ancelotti is there we will analyse it."

L'Equipe also maintains Al Khelaifi would prefer sporting director Leonardo take the reins of the first team. However, the Brazilian, who has left Paris for a short holiday, will most likely have to wait at least until June 20, when his appeal against his nine-month ban is heard by the French Football Federation's Supreme Commission for Appeals before his future role is decided.

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