Real Madrid round-up: Miami; James, Bale, Zidane...
Our daily round-up of bitesize Real Madrid news: the squad flies to Miami where they will share the same hotel as Guardiola; McManaman on Bale; James on his future; Zidane sightings.
The team fly out to Miami
Yesterday at 16.40, the team left Madrid's Barajas Airport, touching down in Miami some hours later ahead of the opening International Champions Cup game against Manchester United at the Hard Rock stadium on Wednesday. Julen Lopetegui has picked nine youngsters who have been called up from Real Madrid Castilla reserve team. Also on the plane was Theo Hernandez. The World Cup winner is set to join Real Sociedad on loan this season, but since the deal is yet to be finalized, he has joined his teammates for the US tour.
Squad will share the same hotel as Guardiola
Amongst the skyscrapers and with views to Biscaine Key and Brickell, the financial district, the team's hotel is situated in East Miami, which will also host old rival Pep Guardiola and his Manchester City squad. Lopetegui's men will train at Barry University and Florida International University, with their first session taking place at 10am local time today (16.00 CET).
James rules out Bernabeu return
With the transfer deadline day drawing closer, Real Madrid fans are anxiously awaiting the announcement of a new signing that could at least partially fill Cristiano Ronaldo's boots. The door has been closed on Neymar, Mbappe and Hazard, so it was unsurprising that James Rodriguez had been linked with a return. But yesterday the Colombian ruled out a return to Madrid, going as far as to say that he would be open to a permanent move to Munich.
McManaman praises Bale
Former Real Madrid and Liverpool star, Steve McManaman believes Lopetegui has high expectations of the Welshman next year, but still believes 'Los Blancos' need to make a marquee signing.
"They’ve lost one of the best players in the world and need someone else. Obviously they have Bale and [Karim] Benzema, but they need more reinforcements," McManaman told Spanish news agency, EFE. "I think Lopetegui wants Bale to take over the leadership role that Cristiano Ronaldo had. It’s very difficult because Ronaldo was averaging a goal per game, but Bale is a different type of player and a very dynamic one, who’ll have a magnificent season."