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Why Real Madrid Can't Accommodate Both Toni Kroos and James Rodriguez

Toni Kroos is on Real Madrid's menu.
Toni Kroos is on Real Madrid's menu.Matthias Hangst/Getty Images
Rik SharmaFeatured ColumnistJuly 14, 2014

Both Toni Kroos and James Rodriguez are good enough to play at Real Madrid, but there is no need for the club to buy both.

In fact, adding the Germany star and the young Colombian to the team may even have a detrimental effect.

Both players had fine World Cups. Rodriguez ended up as the top scorer, bringing home the FIFA Golden Boot with six goals.

James Rodriguez was a star at the tournament.
James Rodriguez was a star at the tournament.Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

Kroos, on the other hand, despite not playing particularly well in the final itself, was an important figure for Germany on their run to becoming champions.

Perhaps his finest hour was in the 7-1 semi-final humiliation of Brazil, when he notched twice and played brilliantly.

Kroos' move to Real Madrid is all but sealed, with the Bernabeu waiting to welcome him with open arms, per Marca.

However, Rodriguez also appears close to a move to the Spanish capital from Monaco.

Marca's Carlos Carpio believes the operation is making fast progress toward completion.

Real Madrid are trying to negotiate a fee for the midfielder, down to something around €85 million after Monaco initially wanted €115m.

There's no doubt that either of these players would be able to improve Real Madrid's squad.

David Beckham even lauded the 23-year-old Colombian, per Charlie Eccleshare of the London Evening Standard.

"I think he's got a great future. He's such a talented player and he's a good-looking kid as well, he's got the whole package," said Beckham.

"I've heard about him quite a few times and people told me he was a great talent, but to come on to the world stage at his age and play the way he's played, shows how talented he is."

David Beckham was at the World Cup final.
David Beckham was at the World Cup final.Michael Steele/Getty Images

Rodriguez would certainly not turn his nose up at the chance to join Real Madrid either.

Per Marca (h/t the Daily Mail) he said that joining Los Blancos would be a dream come true:

Playing for Real Madrid is my life's dream: it'd be a privilege to play alongside so many stars. If it happened, I'd enjoy it to the max.

It's really flattering to know that a club of Real Madrid's stature is interested in me. It'd be a dream to join the club of my dreams.

Would I jump at the chance to go to Real? No doubt about it, my answer is a resounding yes.

However, fitting the pair into the team would be problematic. Neither Rodriguez nor Kroos deserves anything other than a first-team place.

But there are two positions at the base of Real Madrid's midfield, one for Luka Modric and the other for Xabi Alonso.

Kroos could play here, but it is not his favoured place on the pitch. It would be buying a screwdriver and using the base of it to hammer in nails.

He is better in more attacking areas, with a good shot on him and the eye to thread balls through.

So it's far more likely he'll replace Angel di Maria as the more attacking central midfielder.

Kroos could replace Angel di Maria.
Kroos could replace Angel di Maria.Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

Which is, coincidentally, where Rodriguez would be most happy playing. And, for that matter, Isco.

Rodriguez is a versatile midfielder and can also play in a left-sided attacking position.

Currently occupying that position? Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Portugal star is unlikely to want to be moved around, and who would tell the Ballon d'Or winner what to do?

Youngster Jese has also featured in that position when given the opportunity before his injury.

Signing Rodriguez would be more of a glamour move than a logical, reasoned decision. Kroos, however, seems a legitimate and likely replacement for Di Maria.

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