Real Madrid Transfer News: Robert Lewandowski, James Rodriguez, Top Rumours

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistMarch 24, 2016

Bayern's Robert Lewandowski during the Champions League round of 16 second leg soccer match between FC Bayern Munich and Juventus Turin in Munich, southern Germany, Wednesday, March 16, 2016. (AP Photo/Kerstin Joensson)
Kerstin Joensson/Associated Press

Real Madrid are reportedly not as keen as they once were on the idea of signing Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski, but the club would consider selling James Rodriguez at the right price.

Carlos Forjanes of AS has reported how interest from the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium in Lewandowski has "cooled":

The Pole is another of the strikers on Madrid's radar, and was chosen as this summer's 'galáctico' signing. Florentino invited the player's agent, Cezary Kucharski to the Bernabéu VIP longue [sic] back in December. But the situation has cooled in recent months. Lewandowski is happy in Munich and, as AS reported recently, he is excited by the prospect or working under Ancelotti next season. The Italian coach insists that Lewandowski will be a key figure in his set-up and that diminishes Madrid's chances of bringing him to Spain.

It's strange any interest in a striker as prolific as Lewandowski wouldn't remain sky high, After all, Bayern's free-scoring No. 9 has helped himself to 36 goals in all competitions at club level this season, per

As a goal-getter, Lewandowski is certainly an upgrade on Madrid's current centre-forward of choice, inconsistent Frenchman Karim Benzema. The Poland international is also an underrated creator of goals, showing a flair for hold-up play and combining with attacking midfielders.

Links between Madrid and Lewandowski have remained strong this season. So strong, in fact, the player felt the need to deny any such move back in early December 2015, according to German publication Sport Bild (h/t AS) after his agent, Cezary Kucharski, had been seen in the VIP box at the Bernabeu.

The idea Lewandowski wants to stay in Munich is understandable. He's become a star in Germany, first with Borussia Dortmund and now at Bayern. It also makes sense any top player would want to work with incoming manager Carlo Ancelotti.

The Italian is an intuitive tactician who emphasises expansive and attractive football. He's also a virtual guarantor of success in the UEFA Champions League, having won the competition three times, including delivering La Decima during his time with Los Blancos.

Lewandowski may not want to join Madrid, while the club may not want to keep mercurial attacking midfielder James. Forjanes noted how president Florentino Perez is not enamoured with the Colombian No. 10's efforts this season.

Yet even so, Los Merengues will apparently want to recoup what they paid for the ex-Porto ace, per Forjanes: "Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United have shown an interest because they know Madrid are open to offers, although the club will hope to recoup as much of those €80 million as possible."

It's difficult to believe any club will pay that for a player whose effort has been questioned. Manager Zinedine Zidane was angry with James' lack of preparation as a substitute back in January, according to Spanish TV Station La Sexta (h/t AS).

Chapters like that are why James is being considered a flop in the Spanish capital.

Few Madrid fans would likely bemoan his exit from the club, provided Real get a good portion of their investment back. But those same supporters would no doubt demand that money be re-dedicated to securing a match-winning striker as good as Lewandowski.