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Soccer-Real's La Liga hopes not totally extinguished, Ancelotti says

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By Iain Rogers

MADRID, May 9 (Reuters) - Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti refused to throw in the towel after Saturday's 2-2 draw at home to Valencia left their hopes of overhauling La Liga leaders Barcelona hanging by a thread.

Real fought back from two goals down at the Bernabeu but were unable to snatch a winner and slipped four points behind their arch rivals with two games left.

Barca, who won 2-0 at home to Real Sociedad in the earlier kickoff, can make sure of a fifth title in seven years with victory at last season's champions Atletico Madrid next weekend, when Real play at mid-table Espanyol.

"It's much more difficult for us now but we will carry on," Ancelotti told a news conference.

"There are two matches left and we have to try to win them both," added the Italian.

Real have won the European Super Cup and Club World Cup this season but are in danger of ending 2014-15 without either defending their Champions League crown or winning a first domestic league title since 2012.

The holders lost last week's semi-final, first leg in Europe's elite club competition 2-1 at Juventus and host the Serie A side on Wednesday for the return.

Barca, who can repeat 2009's treble of Champions League and Spanish league and Cup triumphs, are on the verge of a place in next month's final after beating Bayern Munich 3-0 at the Nou Camp and play their second leg in Germany on Tuesday.

Ancelotti said if his side played against Juve like they did in the second half against Valencia they had every chance of making the showpiece in Berlin.

Real could justifiably claim they were short on luck on Saturday, with Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale and Javier Hernandez all hitting the frame of the goal and Ronaldo having a penalty saved on the stroke of halftime.

"The result was not good but the way we played was very good," he told reporters.

"We had a lot of chances to score, we fought until the end and we deserved to win. Things will work out for us on Wednesday." (Editing by Justin Palmer)

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