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Real Madrid legend reveals Florentino Perez consulted him before signing €100m midfielder



Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

Speaking in an exclusive interview with AS, former Real Madrid midfielder and club legend Claude Makelele has confirmed that president Florentino Perez consulted him before signing Aurelien Tchouameni in the summer transfer window.

Tchouameni joined Real Madrid this past summer, arriving in a deal that could reach €100 million including bonuses. The 22-year-old has settled in very well at the Santiago Bernabeu, especially considering that he was thrown into the deep end soon after his arrival as Casemiro left the club.

Tchouameni has grown into an important player for Carlo Ancelotti and is now all set to play a key role in France’s World Cup campaign in the absence of seasoned campaigners like N’Golo Kante and Paul Pogba.

Makelele, an icon for Real Madrid and France, has now revealed that he spoke to the club president about Tchouameni before his move to the Santiago Bernabeu in the summer window. He also confirmed that Chelsea were also interested in the French ace.

“When he was about to sign, I spoke with Florentino, he wanted to know about the player. Chelsea were also interested. But if Madrid loves you, you have to go, because it’s the best way to be great,” Makelele said.

“Anyone would have told the kid: “If they love you, go, because you can be great there.”

Talking about the qualities of Tchouameni that make him stand out, Makelele said: “He is a very good player. He has that double quality, being good in the midfield and knowing how to attack. He is complete.

“Now, to be at the level of Madrid you have to have personality in the way that Modric does. He has time, and he must learn from those close to him.”

Makelele, however, stressed the importance of keeping learning for the young midfielder, stating: “He is adapting, not only to Madrid’s game but also to what the club means and all the history behind it. That takes a lot. I think that Ancelotti and his teammates are also helping him a lot. The important thing is that he listens and learns.”

On the areas that Tchouameni needs to improve, Makelele added that he needs to grow into a leadership role at the club.

“You have to have leadership, decide if you want to be selfish or be for your peers. If those in front, who are very good, win, you win too. He must be like Hierro, be a leader, like Raúl… When that happens, he will put his name in the sky of Real Madrid,” the former midfielder said.

Makelele also added that Tchouameni would have learnt faster if Casemiro was still at the club, as he could have learnt from the Brazilian, while also insisting that he and fellow Frenchman Eduardo Camavinga can succeed at the club if they emulate Luka Modric and Toni Kroos.

“The important thing is that they understand each other, that they don’t step on each other. Let them share the work as Modric and Kroos have done for so long. It depends on them. It does not depend on the coach or the teammates. If they say yes, I’m going to succeed, they will. They have to believe it.”

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Real Madrid News

Turkish giants to go all-out to sign Real Madrid outcast – report



There is no way back for Eden Hazard at Real Madrid. The Belgian international has not given the management any reason to have faith in his abilities over his past four seasons at the club and is unsurprisingly the most important departure for the Merengues in the summer.

Hazard has one more year on his contract in Madrid. However, it is clear that Carlo Ancelotti does not trust him and that any potential replacement manager in the summer will echo his stance.

According to reports from Mundo Deportivo, Fenerbahce are willing to go all out to sign Hazard this summer. The Turkish side have made the former Chelsea their prime target, yet face a steep task ahead of them.

The 32-year-old is hellbent on seeing out his contract with Los Blancos despite seeing his career sink right before his eyes. It thus becomes complicated for the party to lure away the forward, especially in a competition outside Europe’s top five leagues.

Fenerbahce attempted to sign the winger in the recently concluded winter transfer market. They reached an agreement with Real Madrid but failed to get over the line as they could not convince the player of the move.

The biggest obstacle for the Turkish side will be convincing Hazard to make the move by letting go of his lucrative contract in Madrid. The chances are slim, but not impossible.

Hazard has made just three league appearances and one start for Ancelotti’s side this season in La Liga, a steep fall from last season’s 18 and seven respectively.

His last appearance for the team came back in January when Real Madrid faced Cacereno in the Copa del Rey. In La Liga however, he last played in September 2022 in a 4-1 win over Mallorca.

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