Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti provided a sceptical answer when asked about the futures of forward Marco Asensio and midfielder Dani Ceballos. He stated that it's unclear whether they will be offered a renewal by the club, with both having just one year remaining on their current contracts.
Both featured in Los Blancos' first pre-season match, an encounter against arch-rivals Barcelona on July 23. While the Merengues lost 1-0, Asensio and Ceballos showed some character and determination on the ball.
Speaking after the match about them, Ancelotti said (via AS):
“They don't bother me, but the competition has increased. Leave? Ask them. Renew them? Ask the club."
Asensio, 26, joined Real Madrid from Mallorca in 2015 but was sent to Espanyol on loan for the first season. He returned to the Santiago Bernabeu and has since played 235 matches, registering 49 goals, and 25 assists.
The Spaniard wants to stay at the club this summer. However, Los Blancos haven't offered him a renewal yet and could risk losing him for free next summer if he stays.
AC Milan and Newcastle United are interested in signing him. While the former can provide Champions League football, they might not manage to bear the financial burden of a transfer. Newcastle, meanwhile, can perhaps buy him but won't be able to offer him Champions League football.
His wages of €6 million is also a concern and a bigger obstacle in a potential move is Asensio's desire to stay at Real Madrid.
Ceballos, like Asensio, wants to stay at the Santiago Bernabeu and prove his worth but the 25-year-old has more competition to deal with.
Luka Modric, Toni Kroos, and Casemiro are the first-choice midfielders for Ancelotti. Eduardo Camavinga, Aurelien Tchouameni, and Federico Valverde will compete with Ceballos as backups.
The Spaniard joined Real Madrid from Real Betis in 2017 and also spent two years on loan at Arsenal. He has played 74 matches for the Merengues, contributing five goals and three assists.
He played just 18 matches in all competitions for the club last season. With the FIFA World Cup coming up later this year, he will look to get more playing time to get into the Spanish side.
Carlo Ancelotti on whether Real Madrid will sign more players this summer
The Italian manager also shared that the La Liga and European champions are unlikely to sign any more players this summer transfer window. He said (via AS):
“The squad is closed and it is better than last year. Two new ones have come who are going to contribute a lot. There are 27 players, a lot of them and training them is not easy, but the ones I have are intelligent and understand the difficulty I have."
Real Madrid have signed defender Antonio Rudiger on a free transfer and midfielder Aurelien Tchouameni for €100 million.