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Former Real Madrid manager ‘sounds out’ unwanted striker over January switch to England



Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP via Getty Images

Wolverhampton Wanderers’ disastrous start to the campaign had led to the sacking of Bruno Lage at the start of last month. Although they had been since playing under the leadership of interim manager Steve Davis, the club may soon appoint a proper successor.

Former Real Madrid and Spain manager Julen Lopetegui is currently the favourite to replace Davis and become the full-time manager of Wolves this season.

It is an appointment that may benefit Los Blancos too, as the club are hoping to sell one of their attacking outcasts in the form of Mariano Diaz.

According to Mundo Deportivo, Lopetegui may push for the signing of Diaz after joining Wolves. The former Madrid boss, after all, was a huge admirer of Diaz’s qualities during his time at Bernabeu and had brought him from Lyon in 2018.

Once the recipient of the iconic number seven kit of Real Madrid, Diaz is currently not even considered a proper member of the first team. He has struggled for prominence under Carlo Ancelotti, having only appeared in 14 minutes of football in all competitions this term.

Diaz was even linked with a move away from Bernabeu in the summer transfer window, but a move did not materialise. With his contract expiring in 2023, the January window will be Real Madrid’s last opportunity to cash in on Diaz or they will lose him for nothing at the end of the seasn.

Given the failures of Wolves’ frontline this season, Lopetegui may indeed consider the possibility of signing a new striker. And the report indicates that the former Sevilla boss as already sounded out Mariano, who does offer experience at the highest level of football.

The forward might not cost a fortune either, with his current deal expiring at the end of the season. Real Madrid, therefore, could certainly prefer a January deal as they look to get rid of the player as soon as they can, while generating revenue, albeit insignificant, in the process.

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid, Barcelona, Liverpool monitoring 19-year-old Bundesliga wonderkid – Romano



Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images

According to Fabrizio Romano, Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Liverpool are all monitoring Bayer Leverkusen and Germany wonderkid Florian Wirtz.

After recovering from his ACL injury, the teenage sensation has been slowly working his way back to his best form. So far this term, Wirtz has managed to rack up a tally of two goals and six assists from 13 matches in all competitions.

The 19-year-old’s talent and potential have never been in question and hence it does not come as a surprise that elite clubs such as Real Madrid, Barcelona, and Liverpool are all keeping tabs on the German international.

A versatile attacking midfielder, Wirtz is capable of playing anywhere in the final third of the pitch and backs up with top-notch end product. Be it as a false-nine or in a more withdrawn role, the youngster has excelled for Bayer Leverkusen, catching the attention of top teams.

Real Madrid, for their part, are also understood to be among Wirtz’s admirers. Given the situation surrounding Karim Benzema’s fitness and the lack of backup at the top, the youngster could be an option, as he has shown potential while operating through the middle.

But Barcelona also have a strong interest in the teenager with reports even suggesting that they have already made contact with his father to enquire about his situation.

At the same time, Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is understood to be a huge admirer of his fellow German and with Roberto Firmino on his way out, Wirtz could be lined up as a possible replacement.

However, Romano adds that the expectation is that Wirtz could stay at Bayer Leverkusen for one more year and depart Germany once the UEFA Euro 2024 is out of the way.

For now, there have been talks or negotiations with any clubs, but Real Madrid, Barcelona and Liverpool are all tracking Wirtz and his progress in Germany.

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