Carlo Ancelotti has insisted Real Madrid have total faith in Ukraine international Andriy Lunin as they consider their goalkeeping options in the wake of Thibaut Courtois’ injury.
Courtois is set to undergo surgery after tearing his ACL in training and is subsequently expected to miss the vast majority of the upcoming campaign, leaving Madrid with Lunin as their only senior goalkeeper.
As 90min reported following Courtois’ injury, Madrid have not yet ruled out keeping Lunin as their starting goalkeeper, although club officials are drawing up a list of potential targets as they seek to bolster in the position once again.
After contact was made with free agent David de Gea, Madrid focused their efforts on Sevilla stopper Yassine Bounou, who is keen to make the move this summer.
However, with Lunin set to start the campaign in goal as Madrid open their season against Athletic Club on Saturday, Ancelotti reiterated his faith in the 24-year-old.
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“Emotionally, it was not a good day,” Ancelotti told a press conference. “We are sad on a personal level as it is an injury to an important player, but these things happen in football.
“We wish [Courtois] a speedy recovery and we give all the confidence in the world to Lunin, who is a great goalkeeper. In pre-season, he did well. Total confidence in him, we think he is a talent. What he lacks is what everyone lacks, experience, but he will take it game by game.”
Asked whether he would like a new signing, Ancelotti responded: “We have time until 31 August. Behind Lunin, our goalkeepers have potential, but they are young. We will think about it. Fran [Gonzalez] is 17 years old.
“If we sign a new goalkeeper, we will do it for numbers because we have confidence in Lunin. The confidence in Lunin is total.”
Ancelotti ended with a simple assessment of the sort of goalkeeper he would like to see Madrid bring in.
“One that stops the ball with his hands,” the Italian quipped. “First and foremost, one that makes saves. That is what I ask of all goalkeepers. Let them be good with their hands. When it comes to feet, it’s better to have a striker.”
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