Report: Marcelo Tells Real Madrid He Wants to Join Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistOctober 22, 2018

MADRID, SPAIN - OCTOBER 20: Marcelo of Real Madrid during the La Liga Santander  match between Real Madrid v Levante at the Santiago Bernabeu on October 20, 2018 in Madrid Spain (Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates /Getty Images)
Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Real Madrid left-back Marcelo reportedly wishes to join former team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus and is said to have told Los Blancos of his intention to seek a move to Turin in the January transfer window. 

Ronaldo was sold to the Bianconeri in July for £100 million, and Tuttosport (h/t Calciomercato.com) reported Marcelo could be allowed to leave the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu for as much as €60 million (£53 million).

Marcelo, 30, joined Real in 2007 and has racked up 460 appearances for the Spanish powerhouse in more than a decade, but the European champions are under no obligation to sell, with four years left on his contract.

Brazil international Marcelo and Portugal captain Ronaldo were known to be friends in Madrid, and Sport (h/t Metro) reported in July that the latter had requested Juve make a move to land the former as well.

Any urges Marcelo might have to follow Ronaldo's footsteps are only likely to have been strengthened by Real's poor recent run of form under Julen Lopetegui, whose place at the club's helm is in serious doubt.

Now in his 13th season in Spain, Marcelo has achieved just about all there is to offer in European club football.

But Marcelo's agreement with Real makes a move—at least one in the foreseeable future—unlikely unless the player himself actively campaigns for the exit.

That seems improbable judging by quotes he gave to Real Madrid TV (h/t AS) in September, suggesting he could retire at the Bernabeu if permitted:

"I am very happy at Madrid. People know what my situation is, I have a lot of years left on my contract, I am very happy here. For me it is the best club in the world, I always want to play for the best club in the world."

"It's nice to touch on this issue because since I came, there are rumours and for me it's hard to prove that I want to be, and that I can be at Real Madrid, that I give the maximum to play at the best club in the world."

"I want to play for many years at Madrid, I will look after myself much more than I did when I was 18, that's obvious, all of the footballers do."

Selling Alex Sandro would be Juve's most obvious route to freeing up the necessary funds and squad space to add Marcelo. Writer Muhammad Butt recently praised him and fellow Juve full-back Joao Cancelo, who could yet be Juve's options in those roles for years to come:

Muhammad Butt @muhammadbutt

@MrCatinella @Squawka @soccermemoriess no feelings were hurt. Cancelo and Alex Sandro look very promising but you have to take into account time spent as a duo and definition of roles in the duo.

Similarly, broadcaster Deji Faremi backed Real's stars to overcome Ronaldo's summer departure and their ensuing falter in form given the standard of the squad:

Deji Faremi @deejayfaremi

@raghul77ster Club is tiny without him? Wow! Real Madrid currently have Courtois, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo, Varane, Modric, Kroos...All are at least top 2 in their positions. There's also Isco, Bale & Asensio. Stop it!

Marcelo's contract at the Bernabeu doesn't run out until the summer of 2022, at which stage he'll be 34, which is evidence as to the kind of faith Real have in one of their best performers in recent years.

Real are still smarting from the first high-profile name Juventus took off their hands, and Los Blancos could be wary of allowing another of their stars to join the same European rival in quick succession.