Since the saga began in 2018, there is finally a fresh update about Real Madrid’s pursuit of Kylian Mbappe. Reports have stated that the club have decided to decided not to sign the player and will instead look to reinforce their team through other options.
The Frenchman has been their primary target for over four years at this point, with the transfer going nearly going through in 2022 when the player was about to become a free agent.
After several failed attempts, and possibly hurt ego, though, Real Madrid have decided to make Erling Haaland a real option for the summer of 2024, as per Carlos Carpio (h/t Madrid Zone).
Currently playing for Manchester City, the striker is considered the best player in his position in the world, and even finished runners up in the 2023 Ballon d’Or rankings, one position above Kylian Mbappe himself.
Haaland fired City to a treble win in his first season for the English outfit, scoring more than 50 goals in the process and breaking several records, as well.
How much will Haaland cost?
While previous reports stated that he has a release clause in his contract, the news has since been disproved.
As such, Madrid will have to shell out a fortune to sign the player, with his signing expected to cost somewhere between €150 million to €200 million. And that is only if he chooses to leave the club in the first place.
A better fit than Mbappe
While Mbappe has been on top of Madrid’s priority list for a while, Haaland is arguably a better fit for them tactically.
The Frenchman’s best position is off the left, either in a two-man system up top or playing on the left-wing with the freedom to move inside. Currently, Vinicius Jr plays that role for Madrid, and very well, at that.
After the departure of Karim Benzema, though, the record UCL winners need a striker much more than they need a winger. And while Mbappe can play that position, he prefers being deployed on the left.
That is where Haaland comes in. With Vinicius’ ability to dominate the wing single-handled, coupled with the creativity from Madrid’s midfield, the Norweignan will receive world-class service all round.
It is too early to call the transfer, though, and both transfer sagas are expected to take a few twists and turns as the season goes on.
Real Madrid youngster in line for significant minutes against Granada – report
Nico Paz was long hyped as Real Madrid Castilla’s brightest upcoming star. The media constantly kept the spotlight on the young Argentine through pre-season as he made a strong impression under Carlo Ancelotti in preseason.
His breakthrough eventually arrived, courtesy of Real Madrid’s injury crisis. He has now made two appearances for the team in La Liga and the UEFA Champions League and even recorded his first goal for the club earlier this week against Napoli.
Taking his chances
As revealed by AS (h/t The Madrid Zone), Paz has impressed management with his cameo against Napoli and will be called up for Real Madrid’s clash against Granada tomorrow.
In fact, there is a good chance he sees significant game time on the night.
After all, Ancelotti is without the likes of Luka Modric, Aurelien Tchouameni and Eduardo Camavinga in the middle of the park.
With Toni Kroos, Dani Ceballos, Federico Valverde, and Jude Bellingham filling the starting spots, Paz serves as the manager’s first-choice backup off the bench.
Paz voices his elation
Paz’s introduction against Napoli changed the texture of the game, and it was only poetic that he got the goal that put Real Madrid ahead again on the night.
Speaking to the media after his special night, the Castilla star did not hold back on his emotions.
“This is a dream. For a moment I didn’t even believe it. Very happy to be able to help the team. I dared. I was in automatic mode, I didn’t even know what I was doing. I hit it and well.”
“This is also a message for the other youth players: it is possible to get there. Ancelotti congratulated me, and the whole staff. They are an incredible group and I want to thank them all,” he added, urging his Castilla teammates to keep pushing.