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Real Madrid remain among frontrunners in Bellingham race, player yet to decide next move



Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

According to reports from Fabrizio Romano, Real Madrid continue to be among the front-runners to sign Jude Bellingham from Borussia Dortmund in the summer.

The Italian journalist adds that no decision has been taken regarding the midfielder’s future by either his entourage or the player himself. However, it is his father Mark who takes care of the negotiations.

Though Los Blancos are amongst the main contenders, they are not alone. Manchester City and Liverpool too find themselves equally well placed in the mix and stand as the main barriers between Real Madrid and their dream target.

The Merengues do not wish to spend big in the transfer windows to come and hope for a shift in paradigm towards home-grown and early-scouted players. However, Bellingham forms the one exception to the club’s stance given the situation in midfield.

The youngster is Real Madrid’s main target as a replacement for the ageing Luka Modric. Though the Croatian international may sign an extension, the next season looks likely to be the one where he is slowly phased out.

The 19-year-old Bellingham appears to have the maturity required to lead the team’s midfield for years to come. In 21 Bundesliga starts for the Germans this season, he has already scored four goals and provided four assists in the process.

His performance in the recently concluded World Cup caught eyes across the globe and reignited Real Madrid’s interest in him. The teenager scored one goal and provided one assist on England’s route to the Quarterfinals and averaged 1.2 key passes per game.

Negotiations between Real Madrid and the midfielder’s entourage will heat up in the coming months. However, the viability of the deal will depend on Dortmund’s asking price and the Spanish side’s ability and desire to match the valuation.

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Real Madrid News

Kovacic speaks ahead of Real Madrid vs Chelsea: “Strange to have Modric as a rival”



Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

In less than two weeks, Real Madrid will play hosts to Premier League giants Chelsea in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League quarter-final tie at the Santiago Bernabeu.

It is a repeat of last season’s Champions League quarter-final, with the change being that the first leg was played at Stamford Bridge back then, which Real Madrid won triumphantly.

So, even though they lost the second leg 3-2, Los Merengues progressed on aggregate. At one point in the second leg, Real Madrid were 3-0 down and looked to be crashing out of the tournament.

But, that is not how the match played out as Luka Modric produced a moment of magic, sending in a stunning outside-of-the-boot pass for Rodrygo to guide home. That forced the match into extra time and Karim Benzema then scored to seal an aggregate win for his team.

Mateo Kovacic, a former Real Madrid midfielder, was on the losing side with Chelsea on that fateful night. And the Croatian has now spoken to Sportske Novosti, about that moment of magic from Modric last year as well as the prospect of facing Real Madrid again.

“We were good against Real Madrid last year, especially in Madrid. Then Modrić invented that trivela assist for Rodrygo… We have to be at 120% against them. They immediately punish every minor mistake. Although I repeat, we are also a difficult opponent for them, we showed it, Kovacic said.

On the prospect of facing his close friend and national teammate Modric, Kovacic added: “[laughs] how the draw arranges it… It won’t be easy for us because Real Madrid is always the most dangerous team in the Champions League.”

“It’s a strange feeling to have Modric as a rival. There were hard fouls last year because neither he nor I pull back. We will fight for sure. I play on the left, he’s on the right, we will see who wants what. But I wouldn’t like to hurt him,” he added.

Chelsea had met Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League during the 2020/21 campaign as well and had managed to eliminate them at the semi-final stages on their way to winning the title.

While the Blues have not been in the best of form this season, they have the star power and quality in their ranks to hurt Real Madrid and Carlo Ancelotti’s men must be at their best to get through to the next round.

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