Real Madrid are not hopeful of winning six trophies this season - there is an expectancy on Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale to deliver

With the Uefa Super Cup secured, Real Madrid are targeting five more

Carlo Ancelotti is certainly no stranger to pressure. Juventus, Milan, Chelsea and Paris St Germain have all provided the Italian with challenges to pack their respective trophy cabinets and, for the most part, he’s succeeded. The anomaly is Real Madrid, a club where lifting trophies is an obligation and a club that is a step ahead of the rest when it comes to pressure-cooker scenarios. At the Bernabeu, there’s no rest for the wicked.

So when the Madrid boss was asked about his future before the club’s first competitive game of the season in the Uefa Super Cup, it should have been no surprise. Ancelotti faced similar seemingly cynical questioning before the Champions League final in May and after a year in the Spanish capital it’s a line of questioning he should be well used to. This is no ordinary scenario and this is no ordinary club, this is Real Madrid.

It’s a line of questioning that brought scepticism from many in Ancelotti’s pre-match press conference at the Cardiff City Stadium on Monday but it’s an approach that is valid given the desperation of the club, especially from president Florentino Perez, to win everything in their power this season. Six trophies are up for grabs for the European champions and Perez is not hopeful of winning all six - he’s expectant.

A 2-0 victory over La Liga rivals Sevilla in the Welsh capital on Tuesday night ticked one off the list as Madrid claimed their first Uefa Super Cup for 12 years thanks to a brace of Cristiano Ronaldo goals and star performances from hometown boy Gareth Bale and new signing Toni Kroos. The competition may not sit high up on the ‘wanted’ list for Madrid relatively, but it was crucial if Perez and Ancelotti are to oversee an historic season at the club.

“Every competition and every trophy is important at Real Madrid," said Luka Modric, who took his place alongside summer additions Kroos and James Rodriguez in Madrid’s three-man midfield. "It would be marvellous to be able to win all six [trophies], but it will be very, very tough. We'll face some very good teams on the way. The pressure will be the same as it always is at Real Madrid.”

Cristiano Ronaldo stands tall at the back of Real Madrid's team pose Cristiano Ronaldo stands tall at the back of Real Madrid's team pose  

That pressure was mirrored on the front pages of Wednesday’s sports papers in Spain. Madrid showed “flashes of their formidable potential to aspire to win everything” beamed Marca. “What this Madrid side cannot win through sheer inertia, they win through talent,” said AS’s Juanma Truba. “I am talking about league titles and Champions League (as long as they don’t get bored doing so).”

Ever since Iker Casillas lifted the club’s tenth European Cup in Lisbon the talk has been about winning it all, destroying everything that comes in their path and cementing their place as the biggest and best club on the planet. That honour has been held by Barcelona in recent seasons and it’s the Catalans’ experience of already clinching all six major trophies in one year that helps drive Perez and his colleagues at the Bernabeu.

 

That sextuple was completed in 2009 but spanned two seasons. The chance to win all six in one campaign adds more glitz and glamour for Los Blancos but will also prove more difficult given the number of matches they will need to play in ten months. Pep Guardiola led Barca to the Spanish Super Cup, European Super Cup, Club World Cup, Copa del Rey, La Liga and the Champions League in an historic year for the Catalans and Perez is desperate to trump that.

"We didn't play badly for the short time we have been training,” Perez said after seeing his side clinch their first trophy of the season. “This triumph gives us massive hope and expectations. We want to continue improving and winning trophies.”

Toni Kroos has completed his move to Real Madrid - speaking to Los Blancos manager Carlo Ancelotti Toni Kroos has completed his move to Real Madrid - speaking to Los Blancos manager Carlo Ancelotti  

The Blancos president has certainly provided Ancelotti with the ammunition to compete on six fronts this term. World Cup stars James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos have joined a squad already packed with talent while Keylor Navas adds competition for Iker Casillas in goal and the rumours surrounding former Atletico Madrid striker Falcao adding to Madrid’s firepower will not go away. Luis Suarez’s move to Barcelona may have been the blockbuster transfer of the summer but Madrid’s squad is the one looked on with envious eyes from the watching world.

That much-needed squad rotation could come into operation as early as next week when Madrid take on La Liga champions Atletico Madrid in the two-legged Spanish Super Cup. Diego Simeone’s men visit the Bernabeu next Tuesday before hosting their more illustrious neighbours three days later. La Liga then kicks-off the following Monday when Madrid host newly-promoted Cordoba. All this with the majority of Madrid’s stars only returning to full training last week following their exploits at the World Cup.

The Fifa Club World Cup takes place in Morocco in December and comes at an ideal time for Madrid given the mid-season break in the Spanish season, a break that would usually take the club far away for lucrative friendly matches anyway. Los Blancos’ defence of the Copa del Rey then kicks-off before Madrid will expect to be involved in the business end of the season in La Liga and the Champions League.

No pressure, then, for Ancelotti. This is, however, a man who didn’t flinch when Sergio Ramos headed in a dramatic injury-time leveller against Atletico in the Champions League final, a goal that put the club en route to winning a trophy that made their six-trophy dream a real possibility. This is also a man blessed with arguably the best squad in the world and one of the most talented squad’s in the club’s illustrious history.

One down, five to go.

Arts and Entertainment
Supporting role: at the Supreme Court, Rhodes was accompanied by a famous friend, the actor Benedict Cumberbatch
booksPianist James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to stop the injunction of his memoirs
Arts and Entertainment
Jesuthasan Antonythasan as Dheepan
filmDheepan, film review
Sport
Steven Gerrard scores for Liverpool
sport
News
Tattoo enthusiast Cammy Stewart poses for a portrait during the Great British Tattoo Show
In picturesThe Great British Tattoo Show
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?