The market offers more bargains

Inflation in the transfer market forces Real Madrid to reinvent itself. The irruption of the club-states and the strength of the Premier League have become more expensive to the point of turning the stars into prohibitive players: fired transfers, defenses that are quoted at 80 million euros as if it were a flat rate… Practices that limit access to clubs like Madrid, sportingly attractive, powerful and healthy, but that do not have recourse to an unlimited sovereign fund. The white club, once a great dominator of the market, now only has one signing among the ten most expensive in history (Hazard’s, which ranks ninth). In this environment moves recruitment policy that they manage in Valdebebas, where in recent years they have turned into a strategy of hunting for the search for opportunities offered by the market. The addition of Rüdiger is the latest success of that policy.

The strategy goes through a good knowledge of the market to have ability to anticipate and set goals among the players who end the contract (to incorporate them with the freedom card) or are close to it (to take advantage of this situation and pay a lower transfer). Before Rüdiger, last season Alaba also came free. Two proven defenders and European champions at zero cost.

From Chelsea, like Rüdiger, two players close to the end of their contract also arrived. Courtois arrived in the summer of 2018 for 35 million euros (that same summer, his replacement, Kepa, cost the blues 80 million and Alisson, 62.5 million to Liverpool) and a few months later Hazard did it for 100 million more variables. That price shows how Madrid manages to haggle over inflation. The Belgian was the first galactic that Bale’s arrival in 2013. Six years earlier, the Welshman cost practically the same: 101 million euros. Madrid was able to verify in 2014 the returns that these situations can give. Then he spent 25 million euros to sign a Toni Kroos who had one year left on his contract with Bayern. What the German has done with the white shirt is now history…

Even with Mbappé, Madrid activated both plans: Negotiating with PSG first last season when Kylian still had a year left on his contract, then going after the player when he was heading for the end of the contract. The power of petrodollars put an end to both attempts.

What opportunities can Real Madrid find in the market?

Madrid can find many second-hand footballers. Players like Pogba will end this seasona player who at the time was the object of Madrid’s desire, but whose position is currently covered and, in addition, the search to reinforce that plot is now focused on Tchouaméni. Dybala, another piece coveted at the time by the whites, is also free. Players with less posterity appear on the list, such as Kessié, Belotti (the Torino striker fought five years ago with Dzeko and Mertens for the title of capocannoniere Series A), Lacazette, Lingard or Romagnoli.

More stars also appear on the horizon of 2023. Madrid already orbits over one of them: Gnabry. Bayern’s German he operates in the most ‘unstable’ position of the European champion: the extreme right. He is not the only candy that the white club can find in that position. Both Salah and Sadio Mané end their contract with Liverpool in twelve months. The list of desirable players is long. City must be careful not to undersell or let go of Sterling, Gabriel Jesus or Mahrez (Manchester City). Fabian, that has always liked in Madrid and Ancelotti (who directed him at San Paolo), will also end his relationship with Napoli in the prime of his career (he will be 27 years old).

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The market offers more bargains