Carlo Ancelotti teases Arda Guler start in Copa del Rey clash with Arandina

  • Guler is yet to make his debut for Madrid after joining during the summer
  • Turkish teenager has suffered a series of injuries which have kept him on the sidelines
  • Ancelotti is ready to give Guler his first opportunity to impress
Guler could make his first start for Madrid
Guler could make his first start for Madrid / Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/GettyImages

Carlo Ancelotti has admitted Arda Guler could be in line for his first appearance for Real Madrid in Saturday's Copa del Rey meeting with Arandina.

Guler arrived at Madrid in the summer to real fanfare but immediately needed knee surgery which kept him on the sidelines, and a series of minor setbacks have so far prevented the 18-year-old from turning out for his new side.

After three games as an unused substitute, including the latest La Liga game against Mallorca, Guler finally appears set to give fans a first glimpse of his talent.

"Guler will be available" Ancelotti told the press. "[Starting] is an option."

Madrid are overwhelming favourites heading into the game against a side struggling towards the bottom of the fourth tier of Spanish football, but their last meeting with opposition from the same division did not exactly go to plan.

Eduardo Camavinga, Luis Telles
Madrid were given a scare by Cacereno in 2023 / Quality Sport Images/GettyImages

In January 2023, Madrid faced Cacereno in the third round of the Copa del Rey, and while they ultimately came out on top, the nature of their uncomfortable 1-0 victory had many fans, and Ancelotti himself, sweating for far too much of the game.

Among the starters that day were current first-team stars Rodrygo, Eder Militao, Eduardo Camavinga and Aurelien Tchouameni, with Federico Valverde and Antonio Rudiger both called off the bench when things did not go to plan.

Keen to learn from that experience, Ancelotti added: "I would say that it will be complicated like it was against Cacereno. You have to take it seriously.

"We will try to win because we are very interested in the competition. Due to fatigue I will do some rotation, but we will still be competitive. Let's play a serious game, but I have no concerns. The team is plugged in, motivated. We are very focused on the game. This competition, I repeat, has given us a lot of happiness."