Zinedine Zidane wants Borja Mayoral in place of Mariano

The Dominican striker is expected to leave the Bernabéu and the Real coach sees the returning Wolfsburg loanee as the perfect replacement.

El de Parla regresa tras su año de cesión en el Wolfsburgo y puede ocupar la plaza de Mariano, que saldrá del club. El Europeo Sub-21, clave.

Zinedine Zidane is mulling a senior squad place for Borja Mayoral next season with current back-up striker Mariano expected to leave the Bernabéu this summer.

The striker will return to Madrid after his season-long loan at Wolfsburg and the technical staff at Real Madrid see him as ready to perform a role for the first team. However, the upcoming European under-21 Championship will be a decisive factor. “I’m sure Madrid will be keeping an eye on the tournament. It’s a good opportunity to be in the shop window,” Mayoral told AS.

Zidane a fan of Mayoral

Although the 20-year-old only featured for 426 minutes over the course of 21 Bundesliga games last season, scoring twice, Zidane retains his confidence in the striker. So too does Spain under-21 coach Albert Celades, who has installed Mayoral as his starting striker in recent games and he is expected to be the number nine for La Rojita ahead of Málaga’s Sandro at the tournament in Poland.

Zidane handed Mayoral his debut at the Bernabéu at the age of 18 in a game against Levante in March 2016 and another 45 minutes in a derby against Atlético, calling on the striker to fill in for Karim Benzema when the Frenchman had a few injury issues during Zidane’s first half-season in charge.

Wolfsburg struggles

Mayoral hoped to gain more experience through regular starts in Germany but endured a difficult season in the Bundesliga with Wolfsburg getting through coaches as the side salvaged their top-flight status in the relegation play-off against Eintracht Braunschweig. Wolfsburg’s unexpectedly traumatic campaign limited chances for younger players as the side’s various coaches opted for experience.

Mayoral though is confident that he will earn a place at Real Madrid with a good showing in Poland, where four-times champions Spain are among the favourites.