Real Madrid Transfer News and Rumours Tracker: Week of July 14
With the 2014 FIFA World Cup now finished, the summer's transfer window is ready to step up a gear and few clubs are expected to be as active as La Liga giants, Real Madrid.
Despite capturing the club's 10th European title in May, Carlo Ancelotti's side still finished behind Atletico Madrid and Barcelona in Spain—something Los Blancos will look to reverse in 2014-15, particularly given that the league's most successful club has only lifted the trophy three times in the last 11 years.
After landing Gareth Bale in a blockbuster deal 12 months ago, impulsive president Florentino Perez will be eager to add another marquee name or two to his club's star-studded squad.
Across the following slides, we track all of the transfer news and rumours currently surrounding Real Madrid for the week of July 14.
Real Madrid Closing in on Deal for James Rodriguez
A report from The Mirror's Alex Richards indicates that James Rodriguez is closing in on a move to Real Madrid:
Real Madrid look set to tie up a mammoth £63 million move for Colombia playmaker James Rodriguez.
The midfielder has reportedly agreed terms with the 10-time European champions over a move to the Santiago Bernabeu, according to Spanish daily AS.
They claim that the Monaco man - who joined the Principality club for £38 million from Portuguese side Porto last summer - will move to the Spanish capital for £63 million.
Earlier in the week it had been reported that personal terms between the player and club had been agreed upon, with the transfer fee standing as the only stumbling block.
According to Spanish sports daily AS, as relayed by Tom Conn of Inside Spanish Football, Real Madrid had agreed a wage structure with the Monaco and Colombia star.
"Real Madrid will pay James €7.5 million per season, but the hard part will be convincing Monaco to lower their €80 million asking price, which they intend to do by adding Brazilian midfielder, Casemiro," wrote Conn.
If the latest report is to be believed, that hurdle seems to have been cleared.
Real Madrid and Juventus Reach Agreement for Alvaro Morata
After much speculation, it is expected that Real Madrid and Juventus will officially announce their agreement for Alvaro Morata in the coming days.
According to Spanish daily AS, as relayed by Inside Spanish Football, the emerging forward will continue his career in Turin in 2014-15:
Morata will make the switch for a fee of €22 million, but Real Madrid still retain an option to buy for the amount of €30-33 million, which they can only exercise after the second season and the right of first refusal over the next three seasons.
Morata chose Juventus over Wolfsburg, Borussia Dortmund, Inter, Porto, Arsenal, Liverpool and Villarreal, even though Wolfsburg willing to pay up to €30 million for the striker and Villarreal were willing to give the player more minutes.
The 21-year-old striker scored eight La Liga goals in 23 appearances for Real Madrid last season, per WhoScored.com, and will help bolster the attacking stocks of the Serie A champions under new manager Massimiliano Allegri.
Keylor Navas to Join Real Madrid
While the deal is pending official confirmation, it seems that the Costa Rica star is on his way to the Bernabeu after performing supremely at this summer's World Cup in Brazil.
"Levante have been forced to sell Keylor Navas because he only has one more season left on his contract, which would make him a free agent as of January, with Levante unable to cash in on any future deal," writes Carpio.
The report also states that Real Madrid have beaten Bayern Munich, Atletico Madrid and Porto to the signing of the 27-year-old shot-stopper.
Diego Lopez Will Only Leave Real Madrid for a Big Offer
With the goalkeeping situation hotting up at Real Madrid following the news that Keylor Navas is on his way to the Spanish capital, it has been reported that Diego Lopez intends to stay with Los Blancos unless a big offer is made for the 32-year-old.
According to AS, as relayed by Football Espana, Lopez, who has three years remaining on his contract, is determined to fight for his position and "doesn’t want to move elsewhere and will only do so if he receives what AS describe as a ‘dizzying’ offer - in the region of €5m per year at least."
Lopez was Carlo Ancelotti's first-choice keeper for Real Madrid's La Liga campaign in 2013-14, leaving Iker Casillas to carry out the duties in cup competitions.
In the same report, the player's agent has been quoted as saying:
He wants to be the starter for Real Madrid and will work as hard as ever for it. He will put all his ability in to serve the club.
Napoli haven’t asked for him. He will again convince the Madrid coaching staff that he is a Real Madrid goalkeeper.
Iker Casillas Set to Leave Madrid in 2015
Earlier in the week, it had been reported by El Confidencial, as relayed by Inside Futbol, that Real Madrid wanted to resolve the future of Iker Casillas by the beginning of August, as speculation mounted that the veteran goalkeeper would leave the club before the transfer window closed.
A report from AS on Thursday, as relayed by Football Espana, has indicated that club president Florentino Perez has a pact with Casillas that will allow him to depart the club on a free transfer at the end of the season:
AS claims that the goalkeeper wanted to go this year but the President convinced him to stay for at least another year. But to get Casillas to remain at Santiago Bernabeu, Perez had to agree to let him go in 12 months.
Casillas came under fire for his extremely poor performances at the World Cup with Spain, which followed his high-profile blunder in the Champions League final against Atletico Madrid.
Consequently, Los Blancos have gone searching for another goalkeeper, signing Levante's superb Keylor Navas, as previously stated.
Raphael Varane Seeking Assurances from Carlo Ancelotti Amid Chelsea Interest
A number of clubs have been put on alert regarding the possible availability of the talented Real Madrid defender, Raphael Varane.
Despite holding down a regular place in the France national side at this summer's World Cup, the 21-year-old remains behind Sergio Ramos and Pepe in the heart of Carlo Ancelotti's defence.
As reported by Football Espana, the Frenchman wants to speak with the coach to seek assurances that he'll play a significant role for Los Blancos in 2014-15.
The report suggests that the young star could look to force a move elsewhere if his playing time is set to be limited again in the upcoming season.
Toni Kroos Completes Move and Vows to Win Trophies in Madrid
After a week of slightly conflicting stories, Bayern Munich and Germany star Toni Kroos is officially on his way to Real Madrid.
DONE DEAL: Toni Kroos will make an immediate switch to Real Madrid after the clubs reached an agreement.— FC Bayern English (@FCBayernEN) July 17, 2014
Following the confirmation from the Bundesliga champions, Sky Sports provided a statement from Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge on the midfielder's six-year deal with the European champions:
We would like to thank Toni Kroos for his time here in Munich.
We enjoyed great success here together. We would like to wish him and his family all the best in Madrid and with Real.
According to Football Espana, the 24-year-old has also vowed to win trophies with his new club, saying: "I know how important it is for Madrid to win titles and I’m the right man for this."
Sami Khedira's Agent Says Midfielder Not in Talks with Arsenal or Chelsea
Despite ongoing reports, the latest of which came from Marca (via talkSPORT) on Wednesday, suggesting that Sami Khedira was on his way to the Premier League, Matt Law of The Telegraph has reported that the player's agent has no knowledge of talks being held, dismissing speculation of his exit from Real Madrid to either Arsenal or Chelsea:
We are not in talks with Arsenal. I don’t think a fee can have been agreed, otherwise I would have been told. When a club have an interest I am sure they will call me and we will speak about things. The same goes for Chelsea.
We are talking to Real Madrid about his contract, but nothing is close to being decided. Sami has just returned from the World Cup and has gone on holiday.
The news comes in contrast to the story mentioned above from Marca, which indicated that a fee of £25 million had been agreed between Real Madrid and Arsenal.
Metro, via Darren Lewis of the Mirror, had earlier reported that wage demands remained the only stumbling block, with the Gunners unwilling to pay the Germany international the £150,000-a-week deal he was after.
Angel Di Maria's Move to PSG Now Uncertain
It had been reported earlier this week that Angel di Maria's future at Real Madrid was over.
According to Carine Galli of L'Equipe, via Twitter, Paris Saint-Germain had completed a deal for the in-demand Argentine and would announce the transfer this week.
Additionally, Jose L. Calderon of Marca stated that PSG were looking to cash in on Real Madrid's pursuit of big-name targets by splashing the cash on Di Maria.
John Cross of the Mirror had also reported that a contract dispute between the Argentine and his current club would see the Ligue 1 club capture the explosive utility for £50 million and would pay him wages of £200,000-a-week.
While the club's desire to land Di Maria is obvious, Polo writes: "Florentino Perez and the PSG president, Nasser Al-Khelaifi, have a gentleman's agreement in place reached during their meeting in Spain, stipulating that the Paris club wouldn't finalise terms with Di Maria without Real's blessing.
"Over and beyond that, UEFA and the looming shadow of Financial Fair Play represent a major stumbling block for PSG."
Yaya Toure's Agent Offers His Client to Real Madrid
Yaya Toure has been the centre of a number of strange stories in the aftermath of Manchester City's title-winning 2013-14 season.
It had been reported by The Telegraph back in May that the supreme midfielder was considering his options because City failed to acknowledge his birthday.
While that news raised the eyebrows of many, the development that Toure's agent has offered his client to Real Madrid, per Sport in Spain (as relayed by Sports Mole) will only further surprise those monitoring the Ivory Coast international.
Of course, Manuel Pellegrini is unlikely to let go of one of the Premier League's finest players, and with an official transfer request not appearing to have been made, it should be expected that the 30-year-old will remain in Manchester for the upcoming season.
Liverpool Want to Replace Suarez with Benzema
Following the loss of Luis Suarez to Barcelona, Liverpool are keen to reinforce the club's attacking stocks, with Brendan Rodgers eyeing France international Karim Benzema as an ideal target.
As reported by Metro, the Reds will pocket around £63 million for the sale of Suarez, a hefty sum that could be used to land another big name at Anfield.
Liverpool have valued the current Real Madrid striker at £40 million and will weigh up a bid for the player, as Los Blancos look to other major targets—a process that could see Benzema relegated down the club's pecking order.
For many, it would be a surprise if Real Madrid dispensed with Benzema, particularly given the way he combined with Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale to form the most potent attacking squadron in Europe in 2013-14.
Indeed, the Frenchman's 17 goals and nine assists, per WhoScored.com, marked him as one of La Liga's most influential players last season, meaning only the acquisition of another superstar would be capable of dislodging the striker from his current position.
Real Madrid Closing in on Radamel Falcao
In a comparison of Real Madrid and Barcelona's potential forward ensembles for 2014-15, Rik Sharma of the Daily Mail has indicated that the European champions are closing in on the signing of Monaco's Radamel Falcao.
A truly lethal striker, the Colombian would be the sort of player capable of edging Karim Benzema out of a starting position in Los Blancos' lineup.
Despite scoring just nine Ligue 1 goals in an injury-hit season in 2013-14, the 28-year-old became recognised as one of the world's finest strikers with blistering campaigns at Atletico Madrid in the two seasons prior, where he scored 52 goals in 68 appearances, per WhoScored.com.
It had been reported by Goal's Duncan Castles earlier this month that Real Madrid were in advanced discussions with Monaco over the striker, with the Ligue 1 club expecting to recover at least the €60 million they spent on the former Atletico star.
Yet those reports are contradictory to one also compiled by Goal in early July, stating that Monaco's vice president Vadim Vasilyev had ruled out the sale of the Colombian this summer.
Real Madrid Interested in Danny Welbeck?
With young striker Alvaro Morata on his way to Juventus, as reported by David Kent of the Daily Mail, it has been suggested that Real Madrid could look to bolster their forward options with a swoop for Manchester United's Danny Welbeck.
According to Colin Harvey on the Daily Star, Los Blancos are considering a bid for the England international, with a view to adding backup behind the club's primary striker, Karim Benzema.
Welbeck scored nine Premier League goals in 25 Premier League appearances in 2013-14, per WhoScored.com, and would be a suitable secondary option in the Spanish capital.
However, United would likely be unwilling to let 23-year-old go until sufficient cover is acquired, as Louis van Gaal looks to rebuild a side that finished seventh in the league last season.