5 players who could replace Karim Benzema at Real Madrid
It has been a turbulent summer at Real Madrid. There have been big changes both on and off the pitch at the Bernabeu, and it looks set to be a fascinating season.
This has in fact been one of the most successful periods in the club’s history. They have won the last three Champions League titles, in the process becoming the first side to retain it in its current format.
Just days after beating Liverpool in the Champions League final in May, Zinedine Zidane announced that he was stepping down as manager of the club. He was soon replaced by Julen Lopetegui. This was a move shrouded in controversy, as Lopetegui failed to inform the Spanish FA, and was sacked as Spain manager on the eve of the World Cup in Russia.
Arguably the biggest change was the sale of Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has been such a big part of Real’s success over recent years, and he is a massive loss, especially given that he carried them at times in their run to the Champions League title last season.
There have been a couple of incomings at the club, with Alvaro Odriozola, Thibaut Courtois and Vinicius Junior all making big money move to Real this summer. However, there hasn’t really been that marquee signing that Los Blancos love to make.
There are still worries in attacking areas. Marco Asensio looks set to be tasked with replacing Ronaldo, but the biggest problem may come up front. Karim Benzema has scored just 16 league goals over the past two seasons, and especially with Ronaldo now gone, that just isn’t enough.
There have been rumours that Real are looking to replace Benzema, and they have just under a week of the transfer window left to do so. Here are five men who they could sign to replace the Frenchman.
#1 Rodrigo (Valencia)
Rodrigo is a man who has regularly been linked with a move to Real over the past few weeks. This is partly down to the appointment of Lopetegui, who was impressed by the Valencia forward last season and picked him as part of his World Cup squad. The 27-year-old had an excellent season in LaLiga last time out, scoring 16 goals, the most he has managed during a single season in his career.
He is a very talented player and has shown that over the past year. He is a pacy player who has a knack of getting himself into goal scoring positions. He has a £107 million release clause in his contract though, and Valencia have said they will not sell Rodrigo unless that is met. Real should think twice before activating that clause though. Rodrigo is 27, and his 16 goal haul last season was his best by quite some distance in his time at Valencia. Real need someone with consistency, and Rodrigo hasn’t really proved he is that man.