La Liga is on the verge of returning in mid-June as the football season looks set to resume after the coronavirus crisis. On Monday, Real Madrid players trained under Zinedine Zidane for the first time in two months.
With 11 matches still to go in the current season and Real Madrid embroiled in a neck-to-neck title race with Barcelona, expect fireworks when the league returns. Having said that, the clubs will also be keeping an eye on the preparations for next season.
After a wobbly 2019-20 campaign, Los Blancos will be hoping to add some much-needed firepower to their attack. However, in order to do so, they might have to offload some players, given that the team currently looks stacked in all positions except for the midfield.
Moreover, with an array of young players returning from their respective loan spells, Real Madrid will be keen on chopping some dead weight.
Here are three players who could leave the Santiago Bernabeu in the upcoming transfer window:
#3 Luka Jovic
It would be fair to say that Luka Jovic’s move to Real Madrid hasn’t worked out well. A player who arrived in Spain after scoring 27 goals with Eintracht Frankfurt, has since failed to justify the €60 million fee Real Madrid forked out for him.
Jovic was signed as a replacement for Karim Benzema, while the Frenchman continues to be the first choice striker, the Serbian has found playing time hard to come by.
In the limited opportunities that he’s had, the 21-year-old has scored just two goals, a far cry from his last season’s tally.
As per recent media reports, AC Milan are interested in Jovic but given the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, they would likely push for a loan deal.
Such a move would suit the player as well, and Real Madrid already have a lot of players out on loan. So, it makes sense to allow Jovic to leave on a temporary basis, given he’s still very young.
All that he needs, is some confidence, which comes by playing regularly.
#2 Gareth Bale
For the past few years, Gareth Bale has been a consistent feature in the transfer gossip columns. Last season, the Welshman nearly moved to China, but Real Madrid pulled the plug on the deal at the last moment.
Since then, Bale has played just 18 matches for Los Blancos, contributing three goals and two assists.
It has been more or less the same story since he arrived in Spain, in the first place. Injuries and off-field issues have derailed the 30-year-old winger’s time at the Bernabeu.
Despite having some memorable and crucial goals to his name, Bale won’t go down in Real Madrid’s illustrious history as a legendary player.
Recently, the Welsh express said that he’s very interested in moving to the MLS, which could offer him an exit route from the torrid times that he’s had since signing for the Spanish giants.
Bale would most likely have to take a wage cut for that move to happen, but with Zinedine Zidane making it clear that he’s not a first-choice player by any means, Real Madrid would be wise to offload him soon.
#1 James Rodriguez
Another galactico signing that tanked massively, James Rodriguez arrived at the Spanish capital, after starring for Colombia at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
After a couple of decent seasons though, he never looked like the player for whom Real Madrid paid £63 million.
Zinedine Zidane and James don’t see eye to eye, and so the former Monaco man decided to move to Bayern Munich on loan. He fared well in Bavaria but didn’t do enough for the Bundesliga champions to sign him permanently.
So, the Columbian came back to his parent club ahead of this season, but injuries and his off-field issues with Zidane meant that he took part in just 13 matches till date, across all competitions.
Rodriguez has been linked with multiple clubs including Everton, Atletico Madrid, and David Beckham’s MLS side Inter Miami.
Judging by the way things are shaping up, the 28-year-old’s exit looks like a matter of when and not if.
All stats courtesy: Transfermarkt.com