The casting of the central

Real Madrid is preparing for the possible departure of Ramos, with four front-row names on the agenda. The Austrian, the best placed: would arrive for free and guarantees first European level.

With the renewal of Sergio Ramos with Real Madrid stuck, the white club opens in parallel the casting of the center-back, the solution if finally the Sevillian does not extend his link with Madrid and leaves on June 30. The entity is obliged to look for serious alternatives and market options if the camero finally ends 16 years in white and leaves the team only with Varane, Nacho and Militao to play in the center of the rear.

A dangerous situation for several reasons: the Frenchman ends his contract in 2022 and there is no news yet about his renewal, Madrid also knowing that in 2019 he considered leaving and that he could try again when his contractual relationship ends; Nacho is an example of reliability and versatility, but he's already 31 years old; and the Brazilian does not settle and continues to add performances that leave many doubts about his ability to perform at the highest level, with his recent expulsion against Levante in Valdebebas as the latest example and with a significant history of injuries since he arrived despite his youth .

At this point, one name stands out above the rest: David Alaba. The Austrian from Bayern Munich ends his relationship with the Bavarian team at the end of this season and has already announced that he does not intend to renew, which represents an unbeatable market opportunity. Precisely, to replace the Austrian, Bayern has already closed the signing of another that was on Madrid's agenda: Upamecano. Pay the € 42.5M clause.

After Alaba, come three options that would entail an investment, although to a different degree. Because money is not a minor issue at the moment. Real Madrid plans to lose 91 million euros this season, a figure that it intends to reduce with the salary cuts it is agreeing with the dressing room, player by player. In other times, the white box supported any large expense and there was no fear of going into debt to invest in transfers, Florentino Pérez aware that the Real Madrid brand could bear it all. Without going any further, in the summer of 2019 almost 100 million were paid for two defenders such as Militao (€ 50M) and Mendy (€ 48M); only French is the holder today.

But in the times of the coronavirus, with income falling and a loan of 575 million for the reform of the stadium that will have to begin to be repaid from June 2023 (and until 2049, 29.5 million per year), the president looks for every euro invested, which makes it difficult for the remaining names: Koulibaly, Koundé and Pau Torres.

The one for Napoli will depend on whether the Italian team enters the Champions League or not, as its price will vary greatly depending on whether that sporting objective has been met or not; the central defender of Sevilla has a clause of 90 million, very high; and Pau Torres has a fixed price of 50 million and Villarreal is not in the business of negotiating any reduction either.

David Alaba

The 28-year-old Austrian, who ends his contract with Bayern, has experience at the highest level, can play in three positions (central, left back and midfielder) and would do little damage to the white economy, arriving without transfer cost. Of course, it would entail a transfer bonus for the Austrian and a good commission for his agent, the Israeli Pini Zahavi, an expert in high-level operations and one of those responsible for Neymar ending up at PSG (signing in which he pocketed 10.7 million for his intermediation work). In the case of Alaba, Madrid reaches eleven million net per season, an important figure, but below the 15 that Manchester City puts on the table. If Alaba puts white history and the sports project ahead, he could end up in Madrid; if salary is the differential element, the Madrid club has a difficult time competing for it.

Kalidou Koulibaly

Born in France and international with Senegal, Koulibaly is an old wish of Zidane. A forceful and fast defender, imposing from above and with several suitors in the Old Continent. Real Madrid have already asked about him in the past several times and met with his agent, Fali Ramadani, in March 2019, while closing the hiring of Jovic, whom he also represents. It transpired at the time that Koulibaly's price was 120 million and Naples has remained steadfast in that claim: it rejected an offer of 105 million from Manchester United. But the situation next summer may vary substantially, depending on whether Naples enters the Champions League or not (right now it is sixth in Serie A). If he does, the sale is not ruled out, but it would be at an unattainable price for Madrid today; However, if it does not reach the European Cup, the idea of the Italian team is to sell figures and remake the project around young faces. Under these conditions, and with the pandemic crisis hitting Italy strongly as well, the price of Koulibaly would drop drastically ... 444 444Jules Koundé

The 22-year-old French central defender gave a new exhibition last Wednesday in the first leg of the Cup semifinals against Barcelona (with a great goal included) and was able to leave last summer for City, which put 55 million on the table. Sevilla held out, aware that another Koundé season in Nervión would revalue him even more, as is actually happening. His termination clause is 90 million, a figure unattainable for Madrid in these moments of scarcity, to which is added the foreseeable difficult negotiation with a Sevilla that has never made it easy for the white team. The signing of Ramos in August 2005, closed on the last market day and for the value of the clause, is the best example. Sportingly, the signing of Koundé has all the guarantees, but it would only be possible if Sevilla sold to the downside.

Pau Torres

Sergio Ramos's companion at the center of the rear of the Spanish National Team likes him a lot, he is young (24 years old) and would mean an investment in national product that the Santiago Bernabéu stands are often grateful for. But his clause of 50 million euros, for a promising footballer, but whose performance at the highest level is not yet guaranteed, is a problem. At Villarreal he has not been able to play the kind of top-level European matches that make a difference at Madrid, that reasonable doubt somewhat stops interest, especially in view of what has happened with Militao, which also cost 50 million and does not offer the level that was supposed to. And Villarreal, economically healthy (it lost less than a million last year and has adjusted the budget for this season), is not in the business of negotiating a price drop.

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