Marco Reus has reportedly decided that he wants to represent Real Madrid next season, a decision that would deal a final, fatal blow to Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal's hopes of enticing the Borussia Dortmund forward to the Premier League.
All three Premier League clubs are believed to have been in pursuit of Reus over recent months, with the German - who sadly missed out on his country's 2014 World Cup win due to an ankle injury sustained during a pre-tournament friendly - having proven his talents consistently over recent years with a number of eye-catching displays at both domestic and international level.
However, according to recent speculation from Spain brought to our attention by talkSPORT, it is La Liga giants Real that have been handed a decisive boost in the race for his signature.
Such reports claim that Reus - whose release clause will supposedly stand at £28 million next year - has decided that he wants to move to the Santiago Bernabeu in time for the 2015/16 season with talks over a potential new deal at Dortmund seemingly yielding little result.
Reus - who returned to his former club from Borussia Mönchengladbach in 2012 - is an obvious fan favourite at Dortmund and is a player evidently held in incredibly high-regard by charismatic manager Jurgen Klopp.
As such, his departure - were it come to pass either in January or indeed next summer - would presumably come as a sizeable disappointment, particularly if compatriot Mats Hummels also decided he wants to leave in light of sustained interest in his services from across the continent.
Where does he fit in?
While Reus is certainly a special talent, one initially struggles to see just how he would fit into Carlo Ancelotti's star-studded line-up at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Even if striker Karim Benzema was finally sold to one of his many suitors, rumours are abound that Real Madrid could be eager to switch Cristiano Ronaldo to a more central role - possibly to keep him out of the clutches of Manchester United.
Theoretically that could open up a spot on the opposite flank to Gareth Bale, although you would expect Colombian playmaker James Rodriguez to step into that particular breach.
Quite simply, if this were any other club on the planet, you would have to question the sanity and the intentions behind stockpiling such a number of top-class attacking players.
However, if Real have proved one thing over the years - particularly under the guidance of club president Florentino Perez - it is that they have little regard for convention when it comes to the transfer market and maintaining their reputation for landing the very biggest names on an annual basis typically seems to outweigh any trivial thoughts about the team's needs.
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