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Official: Real Madrid defender joins Serie A heavyweights

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Photo by Fran Santiago/Getty Images

Putting an end to weeks of speculation, Napoli have finally confirmed the signing of Rafa Marin.

Real Madrid, too, have finally issued an official statement, which reads, “Real Madrid CF and SSC Napoli have reached an agreement for the transfer of our player Rafa Marin.”

“Real Madrid wishes him and his family the best of luck in this new stage of his life,” the statement added.

Marin, 21, had been with Real Madrid since 2016 when he arrived from the Real Betis academy. The youngster grew through the ranks and became a key member of Raul Gonzalez’s Castilla outfit for two seasons.

The Spaniard spent the 2023/24 season on loan at Deportivo Alaves where he made a solid impression. After returning to Real Madrid, he now moves onto a new challenge in Italy without a senior appearance for Los Blancos.

Numbers behind the Rafa Marin deal

The young centre-back joins from Real Madrid, most likely for a fee of around €12 million. Los Blancos, though, have reportedly retained a buyback clause in the contract.

As per reports, the European champions will be able to re-sign the defender for just €25 million in 2025. However, the value of the buyback clause could increase to €35 million in 2026.

Napoli, though, reportedly have the option to double the value of the buyback clause if they are willing to pay an additional €10 million.

In such a case, the total value of the transfer could reach €22 million – making Rafa Marin the most expensive sale of a Real Madrid player, who has actually yet to feature in a single game for the club.

Real Madrid, in any case, will continue to monitor Rafa Marin’s progress at Napoli quite closely, knowing he has the potential to become one of Spain’s best defenders.

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid defender set to stay after requesting to see out his contract

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Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images

Real Madrid welcomed four players back from loan this summer: Reinier, Rafa Marin, Juanmi Latasa, and Jesus Vallejo and bid goodbye to Marin already, while the others are expected to evaluate their futures with the club.

Vallejo joined Real Madrid in 2015, but he has primarily played on loan at other teams, including Real Zaragoza, VfB Stuttgart, Wolves, and Granada twice.

Having concluded his third stint at Granada, the player is back in the Spanish capital and now seeks a resolution over his future.

Jesus Vallejo held a meeting with Real Madrid’s hierarchy

Indeed, according to AS, Jesus Vallejo recently met with Real Madrid and made a request to fulfill the final year of his contract.

The club has opted not to exert pressure, leaving his future in his own hands: whether he decides to leave or stay, they support his decision.

Jesus Vallejo did not play much at Granada. (Photo by ATTILA KISBENEDEK/AFP via Getty Images)

After all, Vallejo has been with the club for several years, and Real Madrid intends to honour the wishes of one of the players who have been at the club for the longest time.

The 27-year-old centre-back was a part of the Real Madrid squad in the 2021/2022 season and played sparingly.

But he proved to be a dependable option when called upon and enjoyed a memorable performance in the Champions League against Manchester City as a late substitute.

Due to Real Madrid’s options at the back and the potential signing of Leny Yoro, Vallejo is unlikely to find regular game time if he opts to stay put.

Despite managing just three appearances for relegated Granada last season due to an injury, Vallejo looks forward to putting his physical woes behind him and starting afresh.

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