Real Madrid are not known for their compassion when it comes to their veterans, having had no problem letting go of the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Sergio Ramos and Casemiro when lucrative offers came their way.
Luka Modric is already being tipped as the next veteran to leave the Santiago Bernabeu, but Los Blancos are preparing for another big departure.
In the Croatian’s case, Real Madrid have plenty of options in midfield, with Aurelien Tchouameni, Eduardo Camavinga and Fede Valverde hungry for more minutes. Nacho Fernandez has hardly ever started for Real Madrid, but has played a crucial role as part of the team for the past decade.
However, Nacho, who will soon turn 34, is likely to be nearing the end of his time at the club and despite renewing his contract last summer, he was also close to leaving.
According to the Catalan medium “Sport”, Real Madrid is looking for his eventual replacement. With David Alaba, Eder Militao and Antonio Rudiger present in the team, they have three experienced players and thus will look for a younger player to develop at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Academy players like Rafa Marin (on loan at Alaves), Alvaro Carrillo and Marvel are all real options to make the first team.
The four alternatives which the Madrid club is considering very carefully have already been revealed.
Sporting Lisbon defender Ousmane Diomande has impressed under Ruben Amorim as a 19-year-old. Leny Yoro, another candidate, has played in more than half of Lille’s games this season.
A little higher on the list are Atalanta’s Giorgio Scalvini and Milan’s Malick Thiaw. The latter could reportedly leave for €20 million, although that sounds a bit too low considering his performances in the red and black shirt.
Real Madrid will undoubtedly use the new generation of players they have in the squad at the moment to entice any of them to accept their offer, knowing that they will also face strong competition from other European clubs.