Spanish newspaper El Confidencial claims Bayern Munich midfielder Toni Kroos has asked the German champions to let him leave this summer.
The report will be a great boost for Manchester United and Real Madrid, the two clubs most heavily linked with making moves for the German international.
Kroos has been periodically linked with United, while Real’s interest is more recent, but the paper claims he’s keen to seek a new life and adventure outside Germany.
“The German player has asked Bayern to open the doors to an exit. The refusal to pay him like other players has openly raised the question of his exit since March,” reports El C.
If, and it’s a big if, the comments from the Spanish newspaper are accurate then Real Madrid may have the edge over United in more than one way.
Several reports have suggested that Louis van Gaal has turned his back on the idea of going after Kroos because he’s not the sort of player he wants to come in and transform the middle of United’s team.
He’d seemingly prefer to go Dutch, with a deal for Roma star Kevin Strootman although the midfielder wouldn’t be able to play until October because of injury.
Real Madrid are also in a position to be able to offer Kroos regular Champions League football whereas United have no European football at all.
Los Blancos seem keen to move quickly to try and find a long term replacement for Xabi Alonso.
Alonso signed a new deal at the club last season but he and Kroos are similar players and at 32-years-old, Carlo Ancelotti will soon be forced to address the issue of his long term future.
However, that doesn’t mean that United shouldn’t make an effort to try and sign Kroos if it becomes blindingly obvious that he’s available.
There is plenty of speculation doing the rounds at the moment but if United are in a position to make an offer for Kroos, van Gaal may find it difficult to resist even though he may be keener on signing a slightly different type of midfielder.