Real Madrid and Olympique de Lyon came to an agreement over the transfer of young striker Mariano and both club presidents, Jean-Michel Aulas and Florentino Pérez, know each other from a previous move in the other direction of Karim Benzema. They were on good enough terms that they were reported to have spoken to each other by phone recently.
"I think they are intent on signing a top level forward...a French player"
Aulas, speaking on French radio, RMC, let it slip that Real Madrid were trying to sign a striker this summer and he believed it was a French player. Without specifically mentioning Monaco's Kylian Mbappe, the Lyon chief said:
“I had contact with Florentino and I think they are intent on signing a top level forward. I think he is French."
This may not come as a surprise to anyone who has been following football transfer news for the past few months.
Madrid and Mbappé not over yet
Madrid are known to have been working on the signing of Mbappé for some time and with the loss of Álvaro Morata to Chelsea for 80 million euros - a loss that manager Zinedine Zidane confessed weakened the squad - have both the space in the squad and the added finances to advance their efforts with Monaco.
Although Zidane has said that he has not asked the club for a new striker, he has also been clear that anything can happen up to the closing of the transfer window at the end of August.