Madrid’s financial woes
It is clear that the economic depression that resulted from the Coronavirus pandemic has had a huge effect on Real Madrid’s finances.
Normally able to welcome over 80,000 paying fans to the Estadio Bernabeu, like all clubs they have been deprived of significant revenue from match-going fans.
The stadium renovation, which is nominally due to cost £693.3 million, as per the Financial Times, has further cut into the limited money available in the Spanish capital.
This certainly played a large part in the poorly thought out plan for a European Super League, which ended in more PR suicide than financial oasis.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez was vocal in his support for the idea, claiming that it was a plan “to stop football from dying”, although he has admitted that the plans have been placed on hold at present following nine of the twelve clubs pulling out of the scheme.
New manager the only incoming?
Real Madrid parted ways with boss Zinedine Zidane at the end of the 2020/21 season following an underwhelming campaign. They finished behind cross-city rivals Atletico Madrid in La Liga, while they were embarrassed by Chelsea in the Champions League semi-final far more than the 3-1 aggregate scoreline suggests.
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) May 26, 2021
Carlo Ancelotti has returned to Madrid for his second spell in charge of the club, but seems unlikely to be able to spend much this summer.
Indeed, according to a report from Spanish publication Marca, he has resigned himself to the fact that there “won’t be many new faces joining his Real Madrid”.
There is a lot of quality already in the Real Madrid squad, with Eden Hazard yet to replicate his Chelsea form in Los Blancos colours, Eder Militao developing into one of the best defenders in Spain, and Gareth Bale returning from a successful loan at Tottenham Hotspur.
According to Marca, Ancelotti has accepted the seemingly daunting task of getting the best out of these superstars already at the club, without making any significant movements in the summer window.
What about outgoings?
On the outgoings front, the club are much more flexible. Perez has already spoken of the need to reduce a bloated squad to meet squad registration limits.
Florentino Perez: “We have 35 players and can only register 25…Ceballos, Kubo, Odegaard, we can’t fit them all. We’re talking with players & their agents. We have a lot of young players, if they can’t develop here they can go on loan and come back.” [@TomAllnuttAFP]
— Z (@ZRAFC) June 25, 2021
Brahim Diaz, Martin Odegaard, Takefusa Kubo, Luka Jovic, Gareth Bale and Dani Ceballos were all away from the club on loan last season, and will need either re-integrating into the squad or moving on this summer.
Arsenal are rumoured to have been interested in Odegaard following his successful spell at the club on loan last season, but the Norwegian has already confirmed that he will be remaining in Madrid for the 2021/22 campaign.
Odegaard staying with Madrid – Arsenal have been planning around this eventuality for some time although crucially when Villa stole a march on Buendia they were still hoping to bring back the Norwegian. https://t.co/hpzA8xNwOg
— James Benge (@jamesbenge) June 23, 2021
Meanwhile, Club captain Sergio Ramos has already left on a free transfer, with Los Blancos and the veteran defender unable to come to an agreement regarding an extension to his contract.
Club legend ✅ Champions League icon ✅
⚪️ 16 seasons, 671 games, 101 goals, 22 trophies, 4 Champions League titles…
— UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) June 25, 2021
Another who seems open to a move according to reports is his defensive partner Raphael Varane. The 28-year-old has long been linked with a move to Manchester United, and this summer it appears as though a deal is there to be done.
— Samuel Luckhurst (@samuelluckhurst) June 25, 2021
Varane has rejected the offer of a new deal in Madrid, with his current deal due to expire next summer, making a move more likely this window as Real Madrid try to avoid losing another star for free.
“We’ve not received any official bid for Raphael Varane. He’s at the Euros now then we will see what happens – if he wants to leave the club this summer, he’ll say it”.
Were Varane to follow Ramos out of the capital, it seems unthinkable that Madrid would not seek a new centre back, with only Nacho Fernandez, Militao and incoming David Alaba available as recognised centre-halves in the current squad.
“One big-name signing possible”
Despite the supposed lack of money in Madrid, Marca suggests that there is the possibility for “one big-name signing” to join Los Blancos this summer.
The two names mentioned are predictably Kylian Mbappe and Erling Haaland, who have both lit up European football in the past eighteen months.
Haaland has a release clause in his contract which comes into effect in 2022, but clubs including Chelsea are aiming to avoid the bidding war by signing him this summer. It now seems that Real Madrid may be due to join the chase too.
Erling Haaland 🤝 Chelsea
The Borussia Dortmund striker’s future is the subject of intense speculation this summer and it is European champions Chelsea who have emerged as the most serious suitors for the £150m-rated goal machine 🤑
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) June 20, 2021
On the Mbappe front, the Frenchman’s current deal in Paris expires next summer, but that has seemingly done little to dissuade PSG president Nasser Al Khelaifi, who has poured cold water on any talk of a move.
PSG president Nasser Al Khelaifi: “I will be clear. Kylian Mbappé will continue here at Paris Saint-Germain, we will never sell him and he will never leave the club as a free agent. Impossible”, he told @lequipe. 🔵🚨 #PSG #Mbappé
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) June 6, 2021
Despite the desire for both players then, it appears as though Real Madrid may find themselves frustrated in their efforts at least this summer.
Chelsea set Tammy Abraham asking price as Blues prepare to make room for at least one big-name striker signing
This article was edited by Tom Canton.