Former Tottenham trialist targeted by Real Madrid, says ex-coach

Australian goalkeeper Mathew Ryan is being linked with a move to the La Liga giants after the World Cup.

In July 2012 Tottenham Hotspur decided to give a young goalkeeper the chance to impress on a trial spell at the club.

Australian Mathew Ryan was just 20-years-old at the time and was contracted to Central Coast Mariners in the Australian A-League.

He said at the time:

“Excited? I sure am. It's the chance of a lifetime. It is something I've been dreaming of since I was a kid. To be invited to train with one of the biggest clubs in England is a huge honour and I can't wait to get over there.”

Ryan however obviously did not do enough to impress the Tottenham staff in 2012 - and his stay was not extended.

He went on to be the breakout star of the A-League season in 2012-13 and have another Premier League trial at West Brom before almost signing for Rangers - a deal which eventually broke down.

So in May of last year he moved to Belgium by signing for Club Brugge.

He has since gone on to become one of the star players in the Brugge side and the standout goalkeeper in the division. This form has seen him courted by many clubs and Ryan is said to be considering his future after the World Cup in Brazil.

He told Belgian media in February:

“This club has been great for me and I am loving my time here but I have ambitions and I don’t want to be here for ever...I’d love the chance to play in England, Spain, Italy or Germany, though the Premier League would be my first choice...”

But it looks like he might have to settle for Spain - as La Liga giants Real Madrid are now said to be keen on a deal.

His former coach at Central Coast is Graham Arnold, now head coach of Sydney FC, and he said of his former protégé this week:

"Matty Ryan left here last year. He's gone across to Belgium and he's the best keeper in the league. I do believe and I have heard that he's getting interest from Real Madrid, he's been doing that well. That kid won't be fazed by anything."

Famed for his excellent distribution and shot stopping ability Ryan would become the first Australian to play for Real Madrid if he did make the move and would be a serious contender to one day become their number one choice.

Which would leave Tottenham very red-faced indeed.

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