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Real Madrid eye 20-year-old Brazilian defensive gem, but EU regulations could hamper deal

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Photo by LUIS ROBAYO/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid are faced with a defensive crisis in both the short and medium term. In terms of the immediate future, the team has just one first-team defender available for the first game of the new year after Nacho Fernandez’s suspension.

Yet, the worry is around the medium term. With David Alaba joining Eder Militao on the sidelines with an ACL rupture, the Merengues are in dire need of a new name on defence and AS bring out a surprise option that the club are considering.

A Pearl in Brazil

As revealed by the Spanish outlet, Real Madrid see Zenit St Petersburg’s young defender Robert Renan as a promising option to rope in during the winter transfer market.

At just 20 years of age, he is one of the several Brazilian-rooted players Juni Calafat has been monitoring. His profile appeals to Real Madrid’s administration for three reasons.

For starters, his age is a big factor for he still has a lot to grow at 20 years of age. His high ceiling, coupled with his potential longevity and left-footedness comprise Real Madrid’s three points of interest.

Another crucial reason behind Real Madrid’s interest in Renan addresses the means of transfer. His market value is currently low, thus enabling a low-cost operation.

If not, Zenit would be willing to send the player on loan with a purchase option at the end of the season, a manoeuvre that gives Los Blancos the time to study the player and generate a clearer decision.

The one impedance

While the youngster does tick most of Real Madrid’s boxes, there is one fundamental hurdle that Real Madrid would have to deal with in his transfer.

Zenit St Petersburg, the player’s current employer, are owned by Gazprom which is a gas company under Russian state control.

In light of the war situation in Russia, the European Union and the United States of America rule that no transaction exceeding a value of €100,000 should be conducted with institutions linked to Vladimir Putin.

Over 28 European Clubs have completed such transfers without consequences regardless, but it could pose a problem for Real Madrid considering the size of the institution and the media attention they generate.

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Real Madrid News

Bundesliga title-winner ‘is ready for Real Madrid’, says former German great

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Photo by INA FASSBENDER/AFP via Getty Images

Speaking in an interview with Sport BILD (h/t AS), Germany legend Michael Ballack has claimed that Bayer Leverkusen sensation Florian Wirtz is ready to play for Real Madrid.

Wirtz is a player that Real Madrid have been closely monitoring for a while now, with the German sensation being seen as a long-term replacement for Toni Kroos, who announced his retirement yesterday.

A move for Wirtz is being planned for the summer of 2025 and Ballack believes that the Bundesliga title winner with Leverkusen is ready for the big move to the Santiago Bernabeu.

“Wirtz is ready for Real Madrid,” said Ballack.

“In terms of football, Wirtz can definitely play for Real Madrid. You can also see it in Jude Bellingham after his move from BVB: when you play with even better players, you become even better,” he added.

The Toni Kroos replacement? (Photo by INA FASSBENDER/AFP via Getty Images)

Wirtz has a contract with Bayer Leverkusen that runs until the summer of 2027. As things stand, the new German champions have no intentions of selling their prized asset this year.

However, there appears to be an acceptance that the German international will be on the move in 2025.

Other top clubs like Manchester City and Bayern Munich are also understood to be interested, but Real Madrid are likely to beat them in the race should it come down to that next year.

A move for Wirtz, though, could cost in excess of €100 million for Real Madrid should they do indeed decide to proceed with his signing next year.

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