Arsene Wenger hit headlines on Wednesday after criticising Real Madrid's "addiction" to transfers. As if by magic, Spanish newspaper Sport released a huge bit of transfer news regarding the La Liga club just hours later.
They claim Florentino Perez is already planning a major overhaul of the squad for next summer and is prepared to offload two prominent first-team stars to fund a spending spree.
Those two stars, as the picture suggests, are Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema. The former has always had a tricky relationship with the Real Madrid president while the latter has left few inside the Bernabeu boardroom impressed with this whole sex-tape scandal.
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Ronaldo, 30, has been tipped to join Paris Saint-Germain with a report last month claiming Perez had already agreed a £100million transfer deal with one of Qatar's bigwigs. The oil-rich country have turned PSG into their little propaganda project and are ready to plough big money into sealing one of football's biggest stars.
Benzema has scored seven goals in eight games for Real Madrid this season but is approaching the ripe old age of 28. Perez is aware that he will need to sell the France international next summer to get a significant transfer fee. However, it unlikely to rise above £50m.
Once those two pesky world-class stars have been disposed of, Perez can start eating into his wish list with – surprise, surprise – Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea topping it.
The Spanish goalkeeper came within minutes of completing a move to Los Blancos earlier this year but it broke down. He later agreed a four-year contract with the Red Devils, but some sources have maintained the new deal had a release clause installed into it.
Another player on the list is Eden Hazard, who has been struggling with life at Chelsea this season. The relationship between him and Jose Mourinho appears to have broken down and, if the Special One stays, the 24-year-old may seek to leave in the summer. However, recent reports have suggested a world-record fee will be needed.
Whatever happens, it promises to be a busy summer for Real Madrid. Pity it is seven months away.
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