Arsenal and Bayern Munich don’t face each other for another couple of months, but Carlo Ancelotti is already firing shots at the north Londoners.
The Italian may be trying to take the pressure off himself with the Bundesliga giants having only recently overtaken RB Leipzig at the top of the table – whatever his motive is, though, Arsene Wenger will not be pleased with his latest remarks.
Following Pep Guardiola’s departure for Manchester City, Ancelotti was tasked with going one better than the celebrated Catalan by winning the Champions League with the Bavarians.
Guardiola managed three successive semi-finals, but Ancelotti needs to win it. However, he knows there are several teams standing in his way – but he doesn’t include Arsenal as one of them.
“There are seven sides this year who can win the trophy,” he said, per the Mirror.
“Real Madrid, Barcelona, Atlético Madrid, Manchester City, Paris Saint-Germain, Juventus and Bayern Munich.
“At the moment, all seven are among the 16 best.”
It seems just a little disrespectful to completely disregard Arsenal before Bayern have got past them, but it’ll no doubt serve as extra motivation for the Gunners.
Indeed, he also added a further criticism of the club’s owners, insisting they are motivated by financial success instead of winning.
Making a comparison with his old club Real Madrid – where he was sacked after winning the Champions League – he jibed:
“Madrid’s history and demands mean that if a coach doesn’t win trophies, a change is made. You have to respect that.
“It’s true that there are other clubs like Manchester United, where [Alex] Ferguson was there many years, and now Wenger at Arsenal.
“These cases are different, as their owners are from the US and they are more interested in the financial aspect than in who is coach.”