Real Madrid confirm Club World Cup stance after Carlo Ancelotti comments


Real Madrid have officially confirmed that they will partake in Fifa’s expanded Club World Cup despite manager Carlo Ancelotti appearing to rule out such a possibility.

The new-look competition is to be played across June and July next year and will include 32 clubs from across the globe instead of the usual seven major league champions. All but three of those 32 slots have been filled, with Real Madrid guaranteed a place as the reigning Champions League winners.

In an interview with Il Giornale and quoted by Relevo, Ancelotti reportedly said that “Fifa can forget” about Los Blancos playing in the tournament and that the club would reject the invitation.

However, a statement was released on Madrid’s official website clarifying their position in the wake of the manager’s comments. It reads:

“Real Madrid CF announces that at no time has its participation in the new Club World Cup to be organized by Fifa in the upcoming 2024-2025 season been questioned.

“Therefore, our club will compete, as planned, in this official competition that we face with pride and with the utmost enthusiasm to make our millions of fans around the world dream again with a new title.”

Ancelotti took to social media on Monday to clarify his own comments writing on his official X account: “In my interview with Il Giornale, my words about the Fifa Club World Cup were not interpreted in the way I intended.

“Nothing could be further from my interest than to reject the possibility of playing in a tournament that I consider could be a great opportunity to continue fighting for big titles with Real Madrid.”

The expansion of the Club World Cup has faced criticism from a variety of organisations within football, including Fifpro and the World Leagues Association, who have called for the tournament to be rescheduled citing economic harm to leagues and the negative impact on the welfare of the players as reasons against it going ahead.

Higher-ups in the Premier League and La Liga have also voiced their concerns even threatening to boycott the competition but Fifa has repeatedly rejected the notion of any issues and hope to build a club competition that can rival the viewing figures and economic prosperity of the existing Champions League.

The new format will have 12 teams from Uefa, six from Conmebol and four each from Concaf, CAF, and the AFC, one from Oceania’s OFC and one from the host nation.