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Carlo Ancelotti’s ‘mind games’ dismissed as Real Madrid reveal Champions League final XI more than TWO HOURS before Liverpool clash


Carlo Ancelotti’s ‘mind games’ suggestions have been dismissed after Real Madrid revealed their starting XI to face Liverpool in the Champions League more than two hours before kick-off.

The Reds travel to the Stade de France in a bid to score a hat-trick and avenge their 2018 loss to the Spanish champions in the biggest game in European football – live on talkSPORT.

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Ancelotti is known for going early with his Champions League squad sheets

But with thousands of fans still celebrating in the streets, Madrid released their squad roster at 5:36 p.m. for an 8 p.m. kick-off.

Champions League matches often see teams revealed earlier than the usual time before domestic fixtures, but 144 minutes is rather out of the ordinary, especially for a game of this magnitude.

Madrid’s decision to publicize the team so soon was even more curious given questions over who will start for the Reds, with injury doubts around midfielders Thiago and Fabinho.

But when asked if Real manager Ancelotti was looking for a psychological advantage, former Premier League midfielder Andy Townsend insisted the team was already public knowledge.

Townsend told talkSPORT: “I actually think Ancelotti was comfortable announcing the team early because he would have expected Klopp to see this team.

“There is nothing hidden, there are no agendas, no smokescreens, no mind games.

Carlo Ancelotti’s ‘mind games’ dismissed as Real Madrid reveal Champions League final XI more than TWO HOURS before Liverpool clash

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Here’s how Real Madrid will line up in Paris


“It’s Ancelotti’s best XI and I think that’s what Klopp and Liverpool would have prepared for.”

He added: “If you’re looking for something psychological, maybe the fact that he’s happy to announce his team, he’s not bothered or confused about what’s going to happen with the Liverpool team.

“The opponents know very well what they are up against. Nobody wants to divulge anything, but they know. They talk to people in the press and they are very well guided before the teams are released.

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