Real Madrid News
Real Madrid lodge enquiry for €70 million-rated midfielder, Ancelotti appreciates him
According to Santi Aouna of Foot Mercato, Real Madrid have made an enquiry for Napoli midfielder Stanislav Lobotka.
The 28-year-old midfielder has been with the Serie A outfit since 2020 and has grown into an important player, especially over the past year or so under Luciano Spalletti.
Indeed, Lobotka has been a permanent presence in the centre of the park for the Partenopei as they charge for the Scudetto and sit atop the Serie A standings currently.
Lobotka recently renewed his contract with Napoli, committing himself to the Italian giants until the summer of 2027. In the midst of this, though, Real Madrid have lodged an enquiry with the Serie A outfit over the price point for the Slovakian international.
Real Madrid have their sights firmly fixed on Jude Bellingham to strengthen their midfield for the summer of 2023. While the Englishman is seen as a replacement for Luka Modric, Los Blancos could be looking at Lobotka as a possible reinforcement in the holding midfield role.
Aurelien Tchouameni is the only out-and-out defensive midfielder at Carlo Ancelotti’s disposal. While Toni Kroos has been deployed in the role on occasions, the German ace is yet to renew and even if he does, it will only likely be for a year.
So, Real Madrid remain keen on strengthening their midfield unit further and Lobotka has emerged as a possible target.
The reigning Spanish and European champions have made an enquiry for the Slovakian international already and as per the report, Napoli will demand a sum of around €60-70 million for their prized asset.
Shelling out such a large sum for Lobotka in the summer would seem unlikely especially if Real Madrid want to sign Bellingham as well, given that the latter could cost in excess of €100 million.
So, it will be interesting to see if Los Merengues decide to press ahead with their interest in Lobotka or look at other options.
Real Madrid News
Argentine manager in pole position for Real Madrid job if Ancelotti leaves
According to a report from journalist Jorge C Picon, former Tottenham Hotspur and PSG boss Mauricio Pochettino is in pole position to become the next manager of Real Madrid, if Carlo Ancelotti leaves at the end of the season.
Ancelotti’s topic has become a topic of much debate and discussion over the past few weeks. The Italian tactician has a contract that runs until next year and has stated that he wishes to see it out.
However, the team’s failure to win any major title this season could end up spelling trouble or the 63-year-old. The La Liga title looks like a lost cause already while Real Madrid are in a disadvantageous position in Copa del Rey as well.
The UEFA Champions League remains Ancelotti’s best bet to win a trophy this season. Should he do so, the Italian could continue at Real Madrid or even possibly sign a new contract extension.
But, failure to land the trophy could end his second stint at the Santiago Bernabeu and Pochettino is said to be the frontrunner for the position in that case.
The Argentine is currently unemployed after being sacked by PSG in July last year. The 51-year-old did not have the most memorable of stints in Paris but his stock has not diminished in the Real Madrid offices, who had considered appointing him once before as well.
Thomas Tuchel was also a candidate for Real Madrid and talks were also held with him. But, the club informed him that if Ancelotti won the UCL, he would stay on, which played a part in the German signing for Bayern Munich.
Meanwhile, club legend Raul Gonzalez, who is currently the manager of Real Madrid Castilla, is also a candidate, but is seen only as Plan B, with Pochettino very much the frontrunner at this point.
A lot will depend on how the rest of the season pans out and whether Ancelotti is able to lead Real Madrid to back-to-back Champions League triumphs.