Real Madrid backtracks on rejecting FIFA Club World Cup participation due to pay dispute

Real Madrid have denied that they will reject an invitation to take part in next year’s Club World Cup after manager Carlo Ancelotti appeared to claim in an interview that the Spanish club won’t take part due to a pay dispute.

The competition is set to be expanded to 32 teams and will be played across four weeks in the US next summer following the conclusion of the 2024-25 season, with Madrid, Manchester City , and Chelsea all set to be involved.

 

 

Earlier, Ancelotti appeared to rule out Madrid’s participation as he told Il Giornale that his team were not planning on playing due to FIFA not offering enough money.

 

 

But Madrid have since released a statement insisting they full intend to play in the competition they have won five times in the last nine years. 

 

 

The statement read: ‘Real Madrid CF announces that at no time has its participation in the new Club World Cup to be organised by FIFA in the upcoming 2024/2025 season been questioned. 

 

‘Therefore, our club will compete, as planned, in this official competition that we face with pride and with the utmost enthusiasm to make our millions of fans around the world dream again with a new title.’

 

 

Ancelotti took to Instagram shortly afterwards, claiming his quotes from the earlier interview had been misinterpreted.

 

 

‘In my interview with Il Giornale, my words on the Club World Cup were not interpreted in the way that I intended,’ he wrote.

 

 

‘Nothing could be further from the truth than rejecting the possibility of playing in a tournament that I consider could be a great opportunity to continue fighting for big titles with Real Madrid.’

 

His words were in sharp contrast to what he had been quoted as saying by Il Giornale, as the Italian publication claimed he told them: ‘FIFA forgets that the clubs and players will not participate in that tournament.

 

 

‘A single Real Madrid match is worth €20million (£17m) and they want to give us that money for the entire competition. Negative. 

 

 

‘Real Madrid, like other clubs, we will decline the invitation.’

 

 

Madrid now look set to join Chelsea and City – England’s two representatives in the tournament – having won the Champions League in 2021 and 2023 respectively. 

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