Carlo Ancelotti has hailed Cristiano Ronaldo, saying he sets a great example to Real Madrid’s younger players.
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Ronaldo, 28, who has been impressive throughout his club’s pre-season campaign, scored his sixth goal of an unbeaten seven-game run in the 3-0 win over Inter Milan at the Edward James Dome in Saint Louis on Saturday.
Ancelotti, who has been impressed by the former Manchester United man’s attitude and professionalism, told the KMOX radio station in an interview reported on Real’s official website: “[Cristiano] is an example for the kids.
“He has everything a football player needs to be great. And he is. He is great, a really fantastic football player. He is an example for the young players on the team.”
One of those young players is Isco, who has also had an excellent pre-season, slotting in seamlessly into Ancelotti’s fluid midfield set-up.
The former Malaga man, 21, has been called up for Spain’s friendly in Ecuador on Wednesday and told Madrid’s official website: “I am very happy. Everything is going smoothly.
“I am happy about how pre-season has been going, and also now about the call-up. My team-mates all congratulated me. I’ve played with them before in other matches, and I am really excited to play in the game against Ecuador.”
Isco made his senior international debut in February’s 3-1 friendly win over Uruguay in debut, but has yet to play a competitive game for the senior side.
“It is time to keep working,” he said. “What matters is to continue to be part of the coach’s plans, even if it is in the background for now, and to keep working in order to be called up more often.
“I was happy to have been called up when I was with Malaga, and happy to do it with Madrid now.”
The playmaker - who reportedly turned down Manchester City to join Madrid - said he had enjoyed a pre-season campaign in which he has played regularly.
“There is a really good vibe and we have to keep it that way,” he said. “The boss wants us to have the ball and have freedom and creativity on the pitch. I think that we are going to see a really beautiful Real Madrid this season.”