Two options are alternative for Real Madrid attacking line!

James Rodriguez and Alvaro Morata were always too good for Real Madrid’s ‘B’ team, as vital as they may have been in that role to Los Blancos’ La Liga and Champions League triumph last season.

But how can Madrid go about replacing the duo?

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The Spanish and European champions will again face a juggling act with whoever they buy. Even without any additions, manager Zinedine Zidane will have to drop one of Isco or Gareth Bale (assuming that Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema will take up two of the three attacking positions when they’re fit and not being rested).

Any player Madrid bring in will be playing second fiddle for at least a while, which limits the club’s options – it’s hard to justify spending an astronomical fee for someone like Kylian Mbappe and then parking him on the bench. So who’s available?

Here are two potential replacements each for James and Morata:
FOR JAMES
LUCAS MOURA (PSG)

The Brazilian has not lived up to his potential at PSG, but life as a back-up player at Real Madrid may suit him. Lucas would not face any of the pressure he has had on his back in Paris, as he could settle into the ‘B’ team and find his bearings without being expected to be brilliant from the word go.

Given his poor displays over the last couple of seasons, Lucas likely would not command the sort of fee that would put pressure on Zidane to start him, and PSG could well decide that this is a good time to sell him as they look to fund big-money moves for Neymar and Alexis Sanchez.

RIYAD MAHREZ (LEICESTER CITY)

The Algerian would go from being a guaranteed starter at Leicester City to a squad player at Real Madrid.

But Mahrez has been craving to play for a truly big club ever since he helped lead the Foxes to their miraculous Premier League triumph in 2015/16. It’s unlikely he’d turn down a move to Madrid just because he couldn’t be guaranteed a starting berth.

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The one stumbling block to a move for Mahrez is that he may not come cheap – Leicester manager Craig Shakespeare confirmed that the club turned down a bid, thought to be around £32million from Roma for the playmaker this summer.

But Real Madrid have just paid £38million for Brazilian teenager Vicinius Junior, who won’t even come to Spain for another year, so £40million-45million for a talented backup would not be outrageous by their standards.

FOR MORATA
KASPER DOLBERG (AJAX)

The young Dane fluffed his lines in the Europa League final last season but otherwise had an excellent season for Ajax Amsterdam.

Given his young age, Dolberg would represent somewhat of a gamble, but he also wouldn’t face the pressure to perform immediately given he would be behind Benzema and even Madrid youngsters Lucas Vazquez and Marco Asensio in the pecking order.

He also wouldn’t come with too hefty a price tag, limiting the risk involved.

MOUSSA DEMBELE (CELTIC)

Dembele has already shown his worth with eye-catching displays in the Champions League last season. While he’s used to being the main man at Celtic, at just 21 years old the Frenchman would probably expect to not be a guaranteed starter at a club like Real Madrid, and the challenge of breaking into the starting XI would motivate him.

Again, Dembele would come at a much lower price than alternatives like Mbappe or Paulo Dybala, who have both been linked with moves to Madrid recently.

Who do you think Madrid should target to replace James and Morata?

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