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Real Madrid were considering signing 23-year-old former CB in January before he became vital at Lazio



Photo via Getty Images

Real Madrid’s defence has been hit by a wave of injuries this season, starting with Thibaut Courtois in the preseason. The goalkeeper tore his ACL in training, and was, therefore, ruled out for most of the upcoming season.

With ACL injuries relatively not as common between goalkeepers, no recovery date was placed on Courtois’ return, with the hope that he would be able to make it back in time for the last few games of the season.

If that was not enough, Eder Militao also tore his ACL on the first matchday of the season. While he is recovering well as per reports, the Brazilian will still miss most of the season regardless.

And finally, David Alaba was the fourth of the lot to pick up an ACL injury — against Villarreal —, which sidelined him for the rest of the season and probably the 2024 European Championship.

Two centre-backs down, Real Madrid were contemplating signing a centre-back during the winter transfer window. One of the players being considered was their own former Mario Gila Fuentes.

MARCA have reported that Gila’s return was an option considered by Madrid to replace Alaba in January, but the player has now become a starter at Lazio.

Gila signed for Lazio in the summer of 2022, but only clocked four appearances through the entirety of the last Serie A season. He did not receive his first minutes of this season up until late November, either, but has managed to turn the situation around since.

He has now become a starter under Maurizio Sarri, and has played 11 games so far this season, with an entire 90 against Inter Milan in the Super Cup final, and also receiving consecutively three starts against Napoli, Atalanta, and Cagliari.

Gila was also one of the best performers for Lazio against Bayern Munich in the Champions League round of 16 as they recorded a 1-0 win in the first leg of the tie.

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Real Madrid News

Bundesliga title-winner ‘is ready for Real Madrid’, says former German great



Photo by INA FASSBENDER/AFP via Getty Images

Speaking in an interview with Sport BILD (h/t AS), Germany legend Michael Ballack has claimed that Bayer Leverkusen sensation Florian Wirtz is ready to play for Real Madrid.

Wirtz is a player that Real Madrid have been closely monitoring for a while now, with the German sensation being seen as a long-term replacement for Toni Kroos, who announced his retirement yesterday.

A move for Wirtz is being planned for the summer of 2025 and Ballack believes that the Bundesliga title winner with Leverkusen is ready for the big move to the Santiago Bernabeu.

“Wirtz is ready for Real Madrid,” said Ballack.

“In terms of football, Wirtz can definitely play for Real Madrid. You can also see it in Jude Bellingham after his move from BVB: when you play with even better players, you become even better,” he added.

The Toni Kroos replacement? (Photo by INA FASSBENDER/AFP via Getty Images)

Wirtz has a contract with Bayer Leverkusen that runs until the summer of 2027. As things stand, the new German champions have no intentions of selling their prized asset this year.

However, there appears to be an acceptance that the German international will be on the move in 2025.

Other top clubs like Manchester City and Bayern Munich are also understood to be interested, but Real Madrid are likely to beat them in the race should it come down to that next year.

A move for Wirtz, though, could cost in excess of €100 million for Real Madrid should they do indeed decide to proceed with his signing next year.

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