Real's summer transfer plans could be bad news for some of the Premier League's top clubs.
For most clubs, the prospect of forming a “dream team” is an impossible aspiration. But for Real Madrid, it has become something of a habit in recent times. And following a hugely disappointing campaign, it appears their president Florentino Perez is planning wholesale changes this summer.
Every club has a wish-list. But Perez’s suggests that at least some of England’s top sides will be left disappointed or in need of replacements before next season.
In the likely event that Perez is the only candidate to stand in the club’s presidential election, his first act of his latest term will be the appointment of a new manager, a man Spanish newspaper Marca is reporting will be Carlo Ancelotti, despite PSG’s refusals and protestations.
Once in place, the former Chelsea manager may ultimately have a very different squad at his disposal from the one that has fallen short this season.
It is no secret that Real are interested in both Gareth Bale and Neymar, and while the former has just agreed a new contract, and the latter appears more likely to be heading to Barcelona, reports continue to suggest that both may ultimately form the hub of the new Galacticos.
While Spurs fans will have had their anxiety eased by the news of Bale’s new contract earlier in the week, it was with the caveat that he would be allowed to leave should an offer in excess of £50million come in for him.
The way Perez is talking – and knowing full well that he must make a statement of intent to challenge both Barcelona domestically and the German Champions League finalists in next year’s competition – an offer for the Welshman this summer remains a distinct possiblity.
While Bale and Neymar are Real’s top targets, they have also been linked with moves for long-term Manchester United target Robert Lewandowski and Malaga’s Isco.
Both players are very much wanted men, with the latter talked of as Manuel Pellegrini’s first signing if and when he is appointed the new manager of Manchester City. But with Real expressing an interest, it may be down to the player as to whether he follows the man who gave him his chance or remains in the country he calls home.
Malaga executive Francisco Martin Aguilar has confirmed Real’s interest, saying, “They are interested in him, but nothing is official yet.”
It is believed that Perez would only move for the 21-year-old should current Real midfielder Luka Modric move on.
News of a Lewandowski switch to United has gone cold in recent weeks, perhaps due to the persistent rumours of a done-deal with Bayern Munich. And yet that seems unlikely after the Polish striker’s teammate Mario Gotze made the same move. Surely Jurgen Klopp won’t sell his two best players to his biggest rivals.
With Wayne Rooney likely and seemingly ready to depart, Lewandowski would be an ideal replacement, and would form quite a strike partnership with Robin van Persie. But Real may have something to say about that, and will certainly be on the look-out for a new striker themselves should Gonzalo Higuain leave this summer.
One thing is for sure – when Real decide to spend, they spend big.
And while the likelihood of all four players moving to the Bernabeu this summer is slim, there is a very real chance that some of England’s top clubs will either lose what they have, or miss out on what might have been.
Then again…for every arrival there will be a departure. And expect some of Real’s unwanted stars to find their way to the Premier League in time for next season.
image: © Ian D