Real Madrid Transfer News: Los Blancos Can't Afford to Lose Raphael Varane

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistJune 3, 2014

Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane answers questions during a press conference ahead of Tuesday's Champions League group B soccer match against Juventus, at the Juventus stadium, in Turin, Italy, Monday, Nov. 4, 2013. (AP Photo/Massimo Pinca)
Massimo Pinca/Associated Press

Reports linking Real Madrid's Raphael Varane with a move to Chelsea continue to surface, and Los Blancos have to make sure those rumours don't turn into anything more than that.

The French defender recently told Telefoot he wants to focus on the upcoming World Cup, making little effort to confirm or deny reports of him possibly leaving the club, as reported by Sky Sports' Patrick Haond.

"Will I remain a Real player next term? I am absolutely not focused on that. There is a World Cup to prepare for and it is not the right moment to have such questions," Varane said.

Those are the words of a consummate professional, but while Varane said nothing to jeopardize his future in Madrid, he left the door open for potential suitors, including Jose Mourinho and Chelsea.

Manu Fernandez/Associated Press

Via the Daily Mail's Elliott Bretland, Mourinho hailed Varane as the best young defender in the world just last month, telling The Sun, "I think he is the best young central defender in the world. Already I think he's the best."

Mourinho was the man responsible for bringing the Frenchman to the club in 2001 and launching his career in the Spanish capital, so the Portuguese manager likely has a special place in Varane's heart.

The Blues are on the verge of completing the sale of David Luiz to Paris Saint-Germain, as confirmed by the Brazilian defender, and they'll be looking to fill the hole he left in central defence:

The fact that Varane didn't answer questions about his future by saying he has no intentions of leaving the club should worry Carlo Ancelotti slightly, but there's no reason to panic right now.

Varane's progress within Real Madrid's senior team has been steady, and he showed everyone he's already capable of holding his own against the world's best during the UEFA Champions League final.

Angel Fernandez/Associated Press

Real's preferred partnership is one of Sergio Ramos and Pepe, however, and the French international's consistent performances will have the player looking for more consistent minutes sooner rather than later.

Varane is incredibly mature for a 21-year-old centre-back, displaying excellent patience when engaging attackers and building his game around his superb vision rather than his athletic abilities.

Los Blancos are a club very much on the rise, having just won their 10th European Cup, and losing one of their brightest young stars would be detrimental to Ancelotti's long-term philosophy.

Pepe is a fine defender, but he's on the wrong side of 30, and his aggressive style of play makes him liable to frequent suspensions. Via, the Portuguese international was handed 10 yellow cards just last season.

As strong as his partnership with Ramos may be, it won't last. Varane's tremendous potential makes him the perfect candidate to replace Pepe in the starting XI sooner rather than later, and for the sake of the player's happiness, sooner would be better.

But the efforts to keep Varane at the club will have to start right now, and they will have to start with making it clear to any potential suitors that the Frenchman is not for sale.

Maintaining a good relationship with the player will be next, and that means trusting one of the world's brightest young stars to continue his development and letting him play.


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