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Real Madrid veteran not thinking about retirement, could play until 2026 World Cup

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Photo by Yasser Bakhsh/Getty Images

Real Madrid fans and players alike were dealt a massive blow this week as Toni Kroos announced his retirement from professional football.

The midfielder will retire after the end of the European Championship this summer, meaning the upcoming UCL final against Borussia Dortmund will be his last game as a Real Madrid player.

The sudden news of Kroos’ departure has now led to uncertainty over the future of Luka Modric as well, with recent reports suggesting that the veteran midfielder is also considering retirement.

No retirement plans for Modric

However, a recent report from Jose Felix Diaz has offered a fresh update on Modric. The Spanish journalist claims that the Real Madrid midfielder has no plans to retire just yet.

In fact, Modric has never considered the possibility of retiring, at least for now. Despite being 38, the Croatian international has remained one of Real Madrid’s most important players and may play a key role in the upcoming UCL final.

Modric has no plans to retire early (Photo by Aitor Alcalde/Getty Images)

Modric’s services will also be critical for the Croatia team, with their head coach already confirming that he will use the veteran in almost every match.

Modric plans to play 2026 FIFA World Cup

Unlike Kroos, Modric’s footballing chapter will not end after the conclusion of the upcoming European Championship in Germany.

The report, in fact, adds that Modric has plans to play the next FIFA World Cup, which will be held in 2026. He will be close at the time.

The 2026 World Cup will be Modric’s fifth World Cup participation, in a flourishing career that saw him feature 174 times for the Croatian national team.

It could well have been his sixth if Croatia hadn’t failed in qualifying for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

As for Real Madrid, Modric’s desire to continue should bode well for the management, as they desperately look to retain the services of the veteran midfielder beyond the coming summer.

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Real Madrid News

Revealed: The blueprint behind Real Madrid’s €1 Billion revenue ambition

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Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

As one of football’s biggest and most successful institutions, Real Madrid enjoy serious perks on the economic front. After all, they cater to a worldwide audience and thus see their remunerations come in from across borders.

The arrival of Kylian Mbappe will only serve to further grow Los Blancos’ fanbase, and with a generational squad set to dominate world football for the years to come, Florentino Perez sees a special marketing opportunity.

According to reports from SPORT, Real Madrid have thus set themselves a target to hit €1 billion in revenue and have drawn up a concrete plan for the same.

The player aspect

As a football institution, one of the most significant aspects of remuneration is the team’s direct winnings in terms of prize money. Having won the Champions League last season and with Mbappe coming in, the team is in safe hands.

Moreover, the average age of Real Madrid’s squad is just 27.1 years implies that the team has significant longevity with little change expected in personnel.

The second important aspect that the club hopes to count on is the crowd-pulling factor that such young players exert on the new generation.

Kylian Mbappe will be the face of Real Madrid’s marketing campaign. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images)

Real Madrid already boast 410.9 million followers on social media and have added 48.4 million just last year. Mbappe, who himself has 132 million followers across Instagram and X, will further amplify that number next season and add to the club’s followers.

It is thus clear that the Frenchman will become the face of the club and the centre for all marketing operations of Real Madrid plan.

The road to €1 billion is thus not complicated, although Perez must be wary that Mbappe is picky with the brands he endorses. Further, the distribution of image rights will be a major factor to finalise.

The new Bernabeu

Having undergone extensive renovation, the New Santiago Bernabeu will take over as the world’s highest-grossing football stadium next season and play a massive role in boosting Real Madrid’s collections. The partnership with Sixth Street and Legends will also be crucial.

Furthermore, the new venue will also serve as a massive economy generator through miscellaneous events. Apart from Taylor Swift, the club also has agreements with Karol G, Aitana, Lola Indigo and La Velada del Ano de Ibai Llanos for exclusive events.

Real Madrid plan to add extra revenue from exclusive events at Santiago Bernabeu. (Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images)

Needless to say, such events will serve significantly to boost the income and near the elusive €1 billion mark.

Cost-cutting

The final, yet critical manoeuvre Perez plans is to cut the costs on the wage front with a salary reduction of €0% already being made in both 2019-20 and 2020-21. That was, in fact, one of the major reasons Real Madrid stayed on their feet in the pandemic.

Player sales is another element where the men in white have worked their plan, getting rid of the older players while their market value was still high and reinvesting the cash into younger talents who can serve for at least the next decade.

The club recorded north of €800 million in income last year and the €1 billion mark is not too far off. Needless to say, the coming year could thus be special for the men in white.

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