Real Madrid's quest for a centre back: Alaba, Koulibaly, Koundé & Pau Torres
Real Madrid are anticipating a Sergio Ramos exit during the summer and are now looking for a replacement with the Austrian top of the list.
With a stalemate in the process between Real Madrid and Ramos to extend his contract at the Santiago Bernabéu side, the club have now commenced the process to find a replacement in the case that the Camas born defender decides to leave upon the expiry of his contract on 30 June with Varane, Nacho and Militao the remaining central players at the club.
David Alaba is in pole position to join the Spanish side with the Austrian international informing the Bundesliga of his intention to leave the Bavarian side come the summer with Hansi Flick's side already lining up RB Leipzig's Upamecano as a replacement.
The 28-year-old Austrian international is able to play in three positions (centre back, left back and midfield) and would arrive as a free agent. His move would see the club paying a substantial wage (11 million euro per season) to the player along with a substantial commission to veteran agent Pini Zahavi. Madrid face stiff competition from Premier League giants Manchester City who are rumoured to have offered the Austrian 15 million euro per year.
Zidane has been a long time admirer of Koulibaly and his name has been linked with a move to the Spanish capital on more than one occasion after meetings were conducted with the player's agent Fali Ramadani with the last one taking place in March 2019. At that time Napoli were demanding 120 million euro for his services and rejected a 105M bid from Manchester United. Times have changed and failure to qualify for next season's Champions League may force Napoli to reconsider their position and a considerable drop in his price could see the player on the wanted list at the Bernabeu side.
The French player is quickly establishing a name for himself as one of Europe's finest central players and was outstanding this week as Sevilla overcame FC Barcelona in the first leg of the Copa del Rey bagging the opening goal of the night. The Andalusian side resisted a big money offer for his services last summer from Manchester City and at present the former Bordeaux man has a buyout clause of 90 million euro. This figure is out of the ballpark for Real Madrid at present and any move would only be feasible if the Hispalense side reduce their financial demands.
Torres is one of Sergio Ramos' partners at the heart of the defence for the Spanish national side and has youth on his side at the age of 24. His lofty 50 million euro release clause could be a problem for cash-strapped Madrid. Villarreal are one of Spanish football's best managed clubs and are not financially suffering as much as others as a result of the pandemic and have no need to sell Torres to Real Madrid for a lower fee.