Over the past week, there have been several departures from Real Madrid as Karim Benzema, Marco Asensio, Mariano Diaz, and Eden Hazard have all left the club.
More departures are expected with the Merengues working to offload the out-of-favour trio of Jesus Vallejo, Andriy Lunin, and Alvaro Odriozola.
Amidst the rising number of departures from the Santiago Bernabeu, clubs from the Premier League are understood to have taken an interest in midfielder Federico Valverde.
However, according to a report from AS, Real Madrid consider Valverde a ‘non-transferable’ player and will not listen to any offers for the Uruguayan international at this point.
The 24-year-old, whose current market value stands at €100 million, has grown leaps and bounds over the past couple of seasons under the tutelage of Carlo Ancelotti and has been pretty much a regular fixture in the lineup week in and week out.
Indeed, Valverde played 56 times across all competitions in the 2022/23 campaign, notching up 12 goals and seven assists in the process.
And, despite the tentative interest from the Premier League, Real Madrid have no desire to entertain any sort of offers for the Uruguayan international. The report states that Los Blancos consider him a key part of the ‘strategic project’ with the first team and will not entertain any offers for the midfielder.
Valverde, though, will have to contend with added competition in midfield come next season as Real Madrid have added Jude Bellingham to their ranks as well.
The 19-year-old arrives in a deal worth €103 million plus add-ons and will aim to be a starter in Ancelotti’s team, competing with the aforementioned Valverde, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Dani Ceballos, and Eduardo Camavinga for a spot in the lineup.
As for Valverde, the stance from the club is very clear. The 24-year-old is ‘non-transferable’. The only concern regarding the Uruguayan at this point is that he could miss a number of games at the start of the next season due to the incident involving Alex Baena, sanctions for which are still awaited.
Real Madrid rising star suffered against Atletico due to veteran forward’s absence, says Simeone
Real Madrid’s 3-1 defeat to Atletico Madrid was not the first time were in trouble this season. In fact, the Merengues have gone behind early in almost every league game so far.
However, the difference on Sunday night was that they never really mounted a comeback. More importantly, Jude Bellingham did not come good, for the first time.
Simeone unravels the mystery
A jubilant Diego Simeone spoke to the media after his side downed Real Madrid by three goals to one and spoke about a plethora of topics.
Interestingly, he commented specifically on why Bellingham did not have an impact at Civitas Metropolitano, citing the absence of Joselu as a key factor.
“No, the spaces were reduced and I think that Joselu’s lack of presence left him with fewer chances to get there, when he takes advantage of Joselu’s aerial play. We controlled him better, he’s extraordinary,” he said, as quoted by AS.
He even called out the refereeing on the night and insisted that the Real Madrid star-boy should have seen red for his late tackle on Angel Correa, saying:
“It looked like a sending-off to me live, it was a hard leg up, with Angelito hitting the ball.”
Ironically, he defended his defender Jose Maria Gimenez for an equally threatening tackle on the night.
“A bad foul, it’s a yellow card because it goes sideways. Bellingham goes from the front and I think it’s a bit more,” he stated paradoxically.
No time to lament
The game at Civitas Metropolitano may not have gone Real Madrid’s way. Yet, it is good for the Merengues to taste defeat early and see the gaping holes in their dynamic.
Carlo Ancelotti admitted in his press conference that he bore the lion’s share of the fault for Sunday’s loss and that he would have done things differently if given the chance.
“Maybe I could have done it better. It’s pretty clear. When the team doesn’t do what it has to do, it’s my responsibility,” he stated.
Nevertheless, Los Blancos have a hectic schedule ahead with two games in the next five days and a UCL fixture against Napoli next week. With Vinicius Jr back, one hopes they find their mojo once again.