Another Carlo Ancelotti era at Real Madrid is on the verge of beginning, and once the Copa America and Euro 2020 tournaments are over, the Italian can begin Los Blancos’ pre-season in earnest.
After having not won anything last season, the pressure will be on Ancelotti from the get-go to restore some order to the Santiago Bernabeu outfit.
Given how well he knows the club, and the seriousness with which he takes the role, there shouldn’t need to be too much of a bedding in period again.
Indeed, there’s no reason why Ancelotti can’t hit the ground running with the staff he already has in situ, with the potential for one or two more new additions before a ball is kicked in La Liga in earnest.
One player that’s likely to be delighted by his return is Gareth Bale.
The Welshman’s best form at Real Madrid came in Ancelotti’s previous period as coach, and the Italian is more than likely to welcome back the attacker with open arms.
Don Balon suggest that the Welshman will, in fact, see out the final year of his deal at Real and leave the club when his contract expires in the summer of 2022.
Florentino Perez is only likely to accept that decision through gritted teeth after the way Bale’s disrespect of the club was perceived.