Carlo Ancelotti Substitutes Jude Bellingham Amid Alleged Repetitive Warning from La Liga Referee
During Real Madrid‘s 4-1 victory over Villarreal, Manager Carlo Ancelotti faced a pivotal decision as he substituted Jude Bellingham. The English midfielder, who is the top scorer in La Liga with 13 goals this season, received a booking on the 67th minute. Allegedly, referee Jorge Figueroa Vasquez persistently cautioned Bellingham with the phrase “Be careful with me” throughout the game.
In light of Bellingham’s booking and the referee’s repeated warnings, Ancelotti made the strategic choice to substitute him 11 minutes later. This decision not only aimed to prevent a potential second yellow card but also factored in Bellingham’s ongoing shoulder issue. The midfielder’s substitution allowed Dani Ceballos to step in, contributing to Real Madrid’s overall success in reclaiming the top spot in the league.
Despite the victory, Ancelotti acknowledged Bellingham’s impactful performance, stating, “Bellingham has been the protagonist because he has played very well and fought at all times. I have removed him to avoid problems. He has had a problem with his shoulder, and when I can take minutes away from him, I’m going to do it.” Additionally, the match saw challenges for Real Madrid, including the first-half substitution of center-back David Alaba due to a suspected knee injury, later confirmed as an ACL injury sidelining him for the remainder of the campaign.