Real Madrid News
Manchester United defender not closing the door on a future move to Real Madrid
Manchester United star Raphael Varane has opened up about his future and has left the door open for a potential return to Real Madrid.
Speaking in an interview with the GQ magazine (h/t MARCA), the French defender expressed his desire to finish his career at one of his former clubs, Real Madrid, Manchester United, or Lens.
While acknowledging that a return to Madrid would be complicated, Varane said that he does not intend to rush his decision.
“There will be no other team. I will finish my career at Real Madrid, Manchester United or at Lens. Madrid seems complicated because they don’t usually come back. I don’t intend to rush, but the closer you get to 30, the more you think about it,” Varane told GQ.
Varane’s departure from Real Madrid in the summer of 2021 after ten successful years at the club was a surprise to many, but the central defender handled the situation well. He expressed his desire to start a new stage of his career outside of Madrid, and the club respected his decision.
Varane’s departure last summer was part of a larger exodus of Madrid legends that included Zinedine Zidane and Sergio Ramos.
The possibility of Varane returning to Madrid is an exciting prospect for both the club and the fans. He has an excellent relationship with Real Madrid in general, and with Florentino Pérez, in particular, making a return to the Bernabéu all the more feasible.
However, it must be noted that Real Madrid are likely to target younger options in the coming summer. They are among the clubs linked with a move for Josko Gvardiol, even though they are set to face stiff competition from Premier League clubs.
Another alternative for Los Blancos is Portuguese centre-back Antonio Silva, who is currently plying his trade with SL Benfica.
Real Madrid News
Bellingham asked for two specific jersey numbers at Real Madrid, but both taken
Real Madrid have officially completed a move for Jude Bellingham for a total of €103 million in fixed transfer fee, plus €30 million in variables depending on the team and the Englishman’s performances over the course of the season.
This transfer makes Bellingham the second most expensive player in Real Madrid history after Eden Hazard, who signed for nearly €120 million in the summer of 2018.
The Spanish giants have been in talks with Dortmund and Bellingham over a long time, and convinced both parties by agreeing to their demands, including the fees, wages, and personal terms from the youngster.
One of Bellingham’s personal demands was related to his jersey number of choice, according to a report by Cadena SER.
He wanted to take one of #22 or #5 at Madrid. Unfortunately, though, both numbers are currently occupied by centre-backs in the team. Antonio Rudiger signed on a free agent last summer and took up #22, while Jesus Vallejo has been wearing the #5.
Neither of the two are starters for Carlo Ancelotti, with Eder Militao (#3), and David Alaba (#4) guarding the fort.
Bellingham is used to wearing #22 for Dortmund and the England national team, but he has also worn the #23, #10 #8 for the latter. Those numbers are also occupied, though, by Ferland Mendy, Luka Modric Toni Kroos, respectively.
That said, there will be multiple numbers free for Bellingham. Four players have already left the team, including Karim Benzema (#9), Eden Hazard (#7), Marco Asensio (#11), and Mariano Diaz (#24).
Reports have stated that Madrid are looking to give Bellingham the #7, as it has been a historic kit number for them. Cristiano Ronaldo wore it during his incredible tenure at Santiago Bernabeu, succeeding the legendary Raul.
While it has not seen worthy successors since, in Mariano and Hazard, it still remains one of the most valuable kits in Madrid history. Further, giving it to their blockbuster €100 million+ signing would definitely help jersey sales.