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Gareth Bale, James Rodriguez Real Madrid Futures May Be Affected by Brexit Vote

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistJune 24, 2016

Real Madrid's Gareth Bale kisses the trophy after the Champions League final soccer match between Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid at the San Siro stadium in Milan, Italy, Saturday, May 28, 2016. Real Madrid won 5-3 on penalties after the match ended 1-1 after extra time.  (AP Photo/Andrew Medichini)
Andrew Medichini/Associated Press

The United Kingdom's decision to leave the European Union reportedly has major ramifications for Real Madrid and their transfer strategy moving forward. Gareth Bale's future status as a non-EU player reportedly puts Los Blancos over the limit of players from outside of Europe they're allowed to have. 

According to AS (h/t Football Espana), James Rodriguez, Casemiro and Danilo are the three current non-EU players in the squad, so one of those three will likely have to leave before the UK's split from the EU becomes official. Real's impending transfer ban will only complicate matters.

Antonio Calanni/Associated Press

Per Luke Salvin-Hughes of Sport, Rodriguez has been linked with Manchester United, Manchester City, Paris Saint-Germain and Bayern Munich. Casemiro has emerged as a pivotal midfielder for manager Zinedine Zidane's squad, while Danilo was little more than a depth option during the 2015-16 campaign.

Per the report, Bale is unlikely to leave the club as a consequence of Brexit. The Wales international enjoyed a fine 2015-16 campaign and played a pivotal role in Real's run to the UEFA Champions League title, and he's been even better for his country during UEFA Euro 2016.

AS' Dermot Corrigan doubts Bale will leave the club anytime soon:

Dermot Corrigan @dermotmcorrigan

Brexit will [or could] also hurt Madrid as Bale becomes non-EU player so one of James, Danilo & Casemiro must go: https://t.co/jpILHvmvHD

Los Blancos should have ample time to decide which player to sacrifice, as the UK's exit from the EU likely won't become official until 2018. Per Ed Malyon of the Daily Mirror, the Spanish giants could face a transfer ban in that span, however, so Zidane will have to start planning soon enough.

According to Expatica.com, a person can apply for permanent residence after living in Spain for five years. It takes 10 years to earn citizenship. Bale moved to Madrid in 2013.

LA CORUNA, SPAIN - MAY 14: Casemiro of Real Madrid reacts during the La Liga match between RC Deportivo La Coruna and Real Madrid CF at Riazor Stadium on May 14, 2016 in La Coruna, Spain.  (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)
Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images

While Danilo seems the likeliest to leave the club, this latest development could perhaps provide club president Florentino Perez with the excuse he needs to sell Rodriguez. The 2014 FIFA World Cup hero saw his role diminish greatly after Zidane was appointed as manager, and transfer speculation has been almost constant ever since.

The Colombia international has flashed his talent on international duty during the 2016 Copa America Centenario, per OptaJavier, and there's reason to believe he just needs a change of scenery to unlock his potential:

OptaJavier @OptaJavier

3 - James Rodriguez had a hand in three of #Colombia's six goals in this #CopaAmerica: 2 goals, 1 assist. Captain https://t.co/e1YadWPplg

He could leave the club this summer and would likely net a hefty return Real could use to reinvest in the squad ahead of their transfer ban. 

Casemiro's value to the team far outweighs what he'd currently fetch on the transfer market, so when the time comes to decide which player is sold, expect the choice to come down to Rodriguez or Danilo―if Real wait that long.

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