• Chronicle A missile from Ruibal extinguishes the brilliance of Rodrygo and Bellingham at the Villamarín

Andriy Lunin has forced Carlo Ancelotti to change his mind and the Italian, always tolerant in reflection, has had no problem facing an unusual situation. Right now, there is no first-choice goalkeeper at Real Madrid. A month ago, Kepa's injury during the warm-up against Braga opened the door to the goal again for the Ukrainian. The Spaniard was undisputed and there was no debate about the Whites' goalkeeping. But now it's different.

Against Betis, Lunin once again put in a remarkable performance. He saved the 1-0 from Ayoze's shot and was confident between the posts, both in the air and in the play with his feet, something that the coaching staff values positively. Ruibal conceded a great goal, but the full-back's shot, unopposed, slipped into the top right corner. It was almost unstoppable. After the match, Ancelotti did not want to put an end to the debate that he himself has been opening and closing in recent weeks: "Lunin did well, he showed confidence and security. We'll see the next game," he said, without indicating which goalkeeper will start in the starting eleven on Tuesday in Berlin.

The Ukrainian has conceded 5 goals in 8 games and averages 88.2% of saves in La Liga, the best figure in the competition. He makes 3.3 saves per game, one more than Kepa, who averages 77.4% and conceded 10 in the 13 he played in a row before going into injury. In the week he returned to training with the team, just before the match against Granada, Ancelotti was very blunt about the situation in goal: "If Kepa is fine, he will play". However, the Spaniard was on the bench against the Andalusians.

Lunin saved a penalty against Braga and has kept three clean sheets in Madrid's last six games. In the press conference he gave on Friday, Ancelotti was no longer so direct about his intentions in goal and opened up Lunin's chances. "I'll decide between one of the two," he said in Valdebebas. And in Seville he decided that the Ukrainian would play. "Lunin's games have been good and he deserves me to take into account that he can also play. He has shown character and personality. With Kepa nothing has changed, I have total confidence in him," he said on Friday. At Villamarín, after the 1-1 draw, he repeated the same argument. "We'll see the next game," he said after praising Lunin.

In August, after Courtois' injury and the signing of Kepa, the idea of the coaching staff was to give the Spaniard the starting line-up without hesitation, but now the rotation is more than open. A situation that has been seen a few times in recent years in Chamartín. Courtois and Navas swapped positions for a stretch of the season in 2018. Now, at least until the Spanish Super Cup to be played in the second week of January in Arabia, Kepa and Lunin will rotate between the sticks.

The draw leaves Madrid waiting for Girona, who if they win at Montjuic will be the sole leader. "I'm satisfied with this, it's a good point for the table. Do you want me to say I'm sad or angry? Not so. I'm happy," insisted Ancelotti. A reflection that Alaba shared: "I think this is a very difficult ground, it's an important point against a good team like Betis." Madrid have already visited Athletic, Atletico, Girona, Sevilla, Barcelona and Betis with 3 wins, 2 draws and 1 loss. The next stop, after a Champions League break, will be against Villarreal at the Bernabéu before travelling to Vitoria to end the year 2023.

  • Real Madrid
  • Carlo Ancelotti