Real Madrid News
Real Madrid yet to reach contract agreement with soon-to-be-free forward
With Spain’s FIFA World Cup 2022 campaign coming to an early end, Marco Asensio is all set to return to Real Madrid in the upcoming week. And once he is back at the club, the 26-year-old will need to start thinking about his future beyond the current season.
Asensio is in the final year of his contract with Real Madrid. The former Mallorca ace came close to leaving the club in the summer after negotiations over a new deal broke down. However, in the end, he remained at the Santiago Bernabeu.
The Spaniard seemed to have become out of favour under Carlo Ancelotti in the early parts of the season. However, close to the World Cup break, Asensio had regained prominence in the team and had made some important contributions.
It had led to speculations that Real Madrid will table a new contract offer for the 26-year-old so as to keep him at the club beyond the current season.
However, according to SPORT, Real Madrid and Asensio are yet to reach an agrement over a new deal.
And the Spanish international will soon be able to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with the club of his choice starting from January 1, when he enters the final six months of his current deal with Los Blancos.
So, the Merengues must step up their efforts and intensify contacts with Asensio and his camp in order to secure his continuity at the Santiago Bernabeu beyond the current season.
Following a slow start to the campaign, Asensio has shown signs of improvement and has registered a total of three goals and assists apiece from 15 matches across all competitions.
The 26-year-old also showed promise with the Spanish national team at the World Cup, despite playing as a false-nine.
As per the report, many clubs are aware of Asensio’s contract situation and could move to open talks from January 1. But Real Madrid intend to keep him and the player, too, would be willing to continue as long as he feels valued at the club.
However, Los Blancos will need to pick up pace with negotiations in order to avoid a dragged-out contract saga.
Real Madrid News
Kovacic speaks ahead of Real Madrid vs Chelsea: “Strange to have Modric as a rival”
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.