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Real Madrid will keep a close eye on the World Cup in search of a new No. 9

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Photo by JAVIER SORIANO/AFP via Getty Images

Over the years, Real Madrid have made it a tradition of sorts to sign players after their explosive performances in the World Cup. Ronaldo arrived after his exploits for Brazil in 2002, and Fabio Cannavaro was signed after leading Italy to the World Cup triumph in 2006.

Mesut Ozil, Angel Di Maria and Sami Khedira were signed in 2010 while Toni Kroos, James Rodriguez and Keylor Navas were brought in after the 2014 edition. Los Blancos then signed Thibaut Courtois in 2018 after Belgium’s semi-final run in the World Cup in Russia.

And the latest edition of the World Cup in Qatar could see Real Madrid adopting a similar strategy, with AS reporting that the Merengues will have their eyes fixed on the tournament in Qatar in search of a new No. 9.

Real Madrid have Karim Benzema as their ace striker at the moment and while he has enjoyed a spectacular 2022, the Frenchman has struggled with injuries of late and will be turning 35 next month.

Meanwhile, Mariano Diaz is out of favour and could be allowed to leave as early as January. Rodrygo Goes has done fairly well when asked to operate as a striker, but reports indicate that manager Carlo Ancelotti is seeking a proper centre-forward to bolster his squad.

So, Real Madrid will keep their eyes out for a No. 9 at the World Cup, although it must be noted that it does not alter their plans to sign Erling Haaland in the summer of 2024 when his alleged €180 million release clause with Manchester City becomes active.

What will be interesting to see is whether they go for a young striker who can be nurtured or an established veteran who can be a stop-gap solution until 2024 when they plan to move for Haaland.

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Real Madrid News

Real Madrid face Premier League, Saudi Arabia competition for free transfer target

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Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid are set to welcome two new stars this summer, Kylian Mbappe and Endrick, but the Merengues are keen on further bolstering their squad.

Owing to the embarrassment of riches Real Madrid possess in midfield, replacing Toni Kroos with a new signing in midfield is not seen as an immediate priority.

Nonetheless, interesting opportunities will invariably be evaluated closely and it appears the name of Adrien Rabiot has entered the club’s crosshairs.

Real Madrid not the only ones interested

But, according to Gazzetta dello Sport, Real Madrid face stiff competition from Premier League clubs and Saudi Arabian teams in their pursuit of midfielder Adrien Rabiot.

The French midfielder is set to become a free agent if he chooses not to renew his contract with Juventus, a decision that seems increasingly likely.

Rabiot set to become a free agent this summer. (Photo by FRANCK FIFE/AFP via Getty Images)

Known for his technical prowess and versatility, Rabiot excels at playing multiple roles in midfield and notably thriving as a goal threat with late runs inside the opposition box that tend to catch opponents off guard.

While Real Madrid have no shortage of quality in midfield, Dani Ceballos’ exit could pave the way for the 29-year-old to secure a signing for Los Blancos.

However, Real Madrid would have to outmanoeuvre both the financial prowess of Saudi Arabian teams and the competitive allure of Premier League clubs to secure Rabiot’s signature.

On top of that, Juventus are also not giving up on their efforts to try and renew the contract of the French international.

In any case, Rabiot is unlikely to be a priority target for the club but they will be sure to keep a close eye on how his situation develops.

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