Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti has urged people clamouring for Arda Guler to make his debut to “calm down” after the teenage talent was left on the bench against Mallorca.
Madrid paid €20m (£17m) to sign Guler from Fenerbahce during the summer, but fans are yet to see the 18-year-old Turkey international in action due to injuries.
Despite Guler overcoming his latest setback, staff made the decision last month to delay his introduction until 2024, instead focusing on training and building his fitness and resilience.
It raised hopes that the youngster’s chance might come in Wednesday night’s La Liga meeting with Mallorca and he was indeed included in the matchday squad. But Guler remained an unused substitute for the narrow 1-0 victory that was only decided by Antonio Rudiger’s late header.
“It’s okay, calm down,” Ancelotti replied when he was quizzed by reporters afterwards on the reason for Guler ultimately not featuring in the game. “He’s 18 years old, calm down. I’m very aware of it. Patience on everyone’s part. I have it, he has it. We all must have it.”
It had been a similar story for Guler in November when he was named on the bench for the clash with Rayo Vallecano. But the tight nature of the game, which finished 0-0, resulted in Ancelotti not risking throwing him at the deep end, having not played since June.
Madrid face a busy rest of the month ahead, suggesting there will be plenty of opportunity for Guler to at last make his debut for the club.
On Saturday, Ancelotti would be expected to name a youthful side to face fourth tier club Arandina in the Copa del Rey round of 32. There are potentially last 16 and quarter-final ties to play in the Copa before the end of January should Madrid progress through the rounds as expected.
Ancelotti’s team will go on to face Almeria and Las Palmas in the league, but before then will also travel to Saudi Arabia in the middle of the month for at least one game in the Supercopa de Espana.
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