Carlo Ancelotti sold some big players

Where are they now? The 13 players Carlo Ancelotti sold during his first stint as Real Madrid boss

Carlo Ancelotti spent two years at Real Madrid during his first stint at the club and he sold 13 first-team players during that time, but where are all of them today?

Given Ancelotti’s credentials in the game, there can be little doubt that he ranks among the best managers of all time. During his first stint at the Santiago Bernabeu, he won four trophies including the Copa del Rey and Champions League.

We’ve taken a closer look at the Italian’s first stint at the club and have checked up on the 13 players that he sold.

Angel Di Maria

The biggest sale that Ancelotti made during his first stint at Real Madrid was letting Di Maria join Manchester United. Having just produced a man of the match performance in the Champions League final, the Argentine playmaker was hot property back in 2014.

It’s safe to say that his move to England didn’t go to plan, but thankfully he’s been able to recover his reputation since that point.

The winger spent the bulk of his career with PSG where he racked up 295 appearances across seven seasons with the club.

Having just scored 17 goals for Benfica, the 36-year-old is set to become a free agent this summer and he’s currently being heavily linked with a move to MLS. Unsurprisingly, Inter Miami are interested in his services.

Mesut Ozil

Following some productive years with Arsenal and short spells with Fenerbahce and Istanbul Basaksehir, Ozil eventually called it quits on his playing career in March last year.

Since hanging up his boots, he’s clearly been hitting the weights as he’s absolutely jacked these days.

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Gonzalo Higuain

Higuain’s scoring record at Real Madrid isn’t to be sniffed at. A return of 121 goals in 264 appearances is hugely impressive, especially when you consider that Higuain wasn’t always the focal point of their attacks.

After spending his peak years with Napoli and Juventus, the Argentine forward played out his final years in MLS before calling it quits on his career in 2022.

Alvaro Morata

The Spanish forward rarely sticks around in one place for long. Real Madrid banked around £17million when they originally sold him to Juventus in 2014 and they eventually bought him back to then sell him for £60million to Chelsea.

These days he’s been doing the business for Real Madrid’s local rivals and having scored 21 goals across all competitions, it’s been Morata’s most prolific season to date.

Raul Albiol

Still going strong at 38, Albiol is continuing to do the business in La Liga today. Real Madrid sold him to Napoli in 2013 and following several years in Italy, he returned to Spain in 2019.

Now the captain of Villarreal, Albiol doesn’t have any plans to retire soon.

“I want to play until I am 338 years old!” Albiol told reporters earlier this year. “So if they want to renew me, I will do it.”

Jose Callejon

Callejon joined Napoli during the same summer as Albiol and went on to make 349 appearances for the Italian club, scoring 82 goals along the way.

Nowadays he plays for Granada who have just finished rock bottom of La Liga. However, given his contract is soon set to expire, he could be on the move this summer.

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Xabi Alonso

Now considered as one of the best young managers in Europe, the future looks very bright for Alonso. Having just won the double with Bayer Leverkusen, the sky is the limit for him.

We certainly wouldn’t be surprised if he’s the man who eventually replaces Ancelotti in the Real Madrid dugout.

Nuri Sahin

Real Madrid offloaded Sahin to Borussia Dortmund in 2014 and the 35-year-old now works as the assistant manager at Signal Iduna Park.

With Dortmund set to face Real Madrid in the Champions League final this weekend, Sahin will be hoping to get one over on his former employers.

Pedro Leon

Leon left Real Madrid to join Getafe in 2013 and he’s spent his entire professional career in Spain up until this point. He currently plays for Murcia who compete in the Spanish third tier.

Jesus Fernandez

The Spanish goalkeeper made two senior appearances for the club before he was offloaded in 2014. Fernandez rarely sticks around in one place as he’s played for nine different clubs over the last decade.

These days the 35-year-old shot-stopper plays for Voluntari who compete in the Romanian second division.

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Ricardo Carvalho

The Portuguese centre-half was allowed to leave Real Madrid on a free transfer upon Ancelotti arriving at the club in 2013. He spent his twilight years playing for Monaco and had a short stint in China before retiring in 2018.

These days the 46-year-old is the assistant manager of Portugal, working alongside Roberto Martinez.


Despite showing some flashes of brilliance, Kaka’s record move to Real Madrid never quite panned out as expected. He spent four years in the Spanish capital before returning to AC Milan in 2013.

Then following spells in Brazil and the United States, the Brazilian playmaker announced his retirement at the end of 2017.

“I’m preparing to return to football, possibly as a sporting director,” Kaka told Fox Sports Brasil in 2019.

“I’ll finish a sports management course in August and we’ll see what happens from there. To start at Milan would be nice, for the history I have with the club and for the prestige they have around the world.”

Diego Lopez

Following the arrival of Keylor Navas, Lopez knew that his days at Real Madrid were numbered. He opted to leave the club in 2014 and joined Italian giants AC Milan.

After racking up over 670 professional appearances, Lopez announced his retirement in December last year, aged 42.