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Ancelotti goes back to his original plan

Carlo Ancelotti has lamented Real Madrid's defensive struggles in recent weeks, and that saw him go back to his original plan for Los Blancos' 2-1 defeat to Espanyol last weekend.

The Italian opted for a back four of Lucas Vazquez, Eder Militao, Nacho Fernandez and David Alaba, which is the same back four that lined up against Alaves on the first day of the season.

In the seven games that followed, Ancelotti kept tweaking the defence as he searched for a solution that never arrived. The Real Madrid boss has now used six different back fours in the first 10 games.

The only thing that seems clear is Ancelotti's first-choice centre-back pairing of Militao and Alaba, who have played together in the heart of defence on six occasions. It had been five in a row until he separated them against Espanyol, with Alaba moving to left-back.

Ancelotti's headache

Ancelotti seems to be struggling to decide on his full-backs, with Nacho and Lucas covering for the injured Dani Carvajal at right-back, while at left-back Real Madrid have seen Alaba, Nacho and Miguel Gutierrez line up in that position due to the absence of Ferland Mendy.

As he tries to remedy Real Madrid's defensive frailties, Ancelotti went back to his original plan of Lucas, Militao, Nacho and Alaba at the back, but it backfired.

The loss to Espanyol will likely result in more changes at the back for Real Madrid, as Los Blancos continue to wait for Carvajal, Mendy and Marcelo to recover from their respective injuries.

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