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Premier League legend chooses Real Madrid superstar as his pick for Ballon d’Or

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Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid dominated club football last season, both at the domestic and the European level.

Los Blancos were crowned the champions of Spain convincingly, a staggering ten points above second-placed Barcelona.

In the UEFA Champions League, they got the better of not only Manchester City but even Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund on their way to the trophy.

The team’s heroics across competitions, needless to say, give some players very good odds of taking home some of the prestigious individual awards for last season. Jude Bellingham and Vinicius Jr appear to be the best placed.

Ferdinand has his say

In a recent media interview on BBC Sport, English legend and famed pundit Rio Ferdinand was asked about his opinion on Vinicius Jr potentially winning the Ballon d’Or this season.

“Vinicius Jr. for Ballon d’Or? Yes. I don’t think anyone has done anything else to suggest that should change,” he said, asserting that the Brazilian was the best placed to take the accolade home.

Ballon d’Or contenders. (Photo by Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images)

He added, however, that tonight’s result in the Euro semifinal and potentially the Finale could have a big bearing on Jude Bellingham’s chances.

“Unless Jude [Bellingham] can be decisive and England win the Euros, he could shake things up.”

The impact of international performance

While Vinicius was in decent nick for Brazil in the Copa America group stages, his suspension in the quarterfinal proved costly for the team as they failed to get the better of ten-man Uruguay.

The Real Madrid sensation posted on social media to publicly apologise for the team’s failures, and needless to say, the result will have a bearing on his chances of winning the Ballon d’Or.

Thanks to his exploits at the club level, Vinicius may still be the favourite to take the award home. The opportunity, however, lies with Jude Bellingham as England are still alive in the Euros.

Should the midfielder have a big role to play in helping his side advance to the final and potentially win the tournament, he could overtake his teammate as the favourite to win the race. In either scenario, it is a win-win situation for Real Madrid.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

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Real Madrid News

Just in: Real Madrid’s defensive target picks up fresh injury

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Photo by Marco Rosi - SS Lazio/Getty Images

Real Madrid are in active negotiations with LOSC Lille for the transfer of Leny Yoro. After weeks of impasse, the club appear to have made some ground in the race to sign the Frenchman.

However, should the Yoro deal fall through in the coming weeks, Real Madrid have identified Lazio’s Mario Gila as the ideal alternative.

Formerly of RM Castilla, Gila currently plies his trade for Lazio and has emerged as a key defensive lynchpin for the Italian outfit, impressing onlookers with his technique and discipline.

Mario Gila picks up fresh injury

However, in a major development, it appears Mario Gila has picked up a fresh injury during training, reports Diario AS.

In the pre-season camp at Auronzo di Cadore, Gila appears to have fractured his left foot and could be out for several weeks.

Fresh setback for Mario Gila (Photo by Marco Rosi – SS Lazio/Getty Images)

Lazio confirmed the defender’s injury, stating, “Mario Gila underwent clinical and instrumental examinations which revealed a fracture of the phalanx of the big toe of his left foot, suffered during training.”

Gila has started taking the appropriate treatment and the extent of his injury will be known soon. However, as things stand, the defender could be out for at least the next few weeks.

What does this mean for Real Madrid?

Mario Gila’s fresh injury setback is sure to dwindle any hopes of a potential return to Real Madrid this summer.

In any case, Gila’s chances of returning to Santiago Bernabeu were slim given that Real Madrid have finally made some ground in the deal to sign top defensive target Leny Yoro.

Los Blancos, though, would have liked having someone like Gila available as an alternative, especially with LOSC Lille still demanding a fortune for the Frenchman.

Unfortunately, that might not be an option anymore, no thanks to Gila’s injury. The club, though, will keep a close eye on the Spaniard’s injury situation, knowing he could return to fitness before the end of the summer break.

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