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Real Madrid and Barcelona closely monitoring development of 22-year-old Serie A midfielder: Reports

Real Madrid and Barcelona closely monitoring development of 22-year-old Serie A midfielder
Real Madrid and Barcelona closely monitoring development of 22-year-old Serie A midfielder
Nnanna Mba

Eljif Elmas's current form has drawn him suitors in the form of Real Madrid and Barcelona. The Napoli midfielder netted twice in a key World Cup qualifier against Iceland on Sunday, guiding North Macedonia to a much-needed win.

Elmas, who typically isn’t a full-time starter, has been getting regular minutes under the tutelage of Luciano Spalletti. So far, the youngster has made 16 appearances - starting seven games - across all competitions and contributed two goals.

🇲🇰 Elmas features in North Macedonia win👉 sscn.it/06c12f https://t.co/ihH4ZOqpJX

With the ace capable of playing multiple roles, the coach has been quick to take advantage of his versatility. The Real Madrid and Barcelona target has been used as a box-to-box, an attacking midfielder, and even as a left-winger, helping take the load off Lorenzo Insigne when necessary.

Elmas is in his third year at Napoli, since signing for €16 million from Fenerbahce in 2016. Carlo Ancelotti was the major proponent of the star's signing and remains a big fan, hence the interest from Real Madrid. He has also caught the attention of Barcelona, who are looking to rebuild a younger team, according to reports.

It took Eljif Elmas just 11 seconds to open the scoring for Napoli this evening! ⏱️ https://t.co/AZJcAzoZDN

With the 22-year-old’s contract running until the summer of 2025, Napoli would obviously like to hold onto him. However, Barcelona and Real Madrid might put difficult-to-refuse offers on the table for the Partenopei.

Elmas has accumulated 96 appearances since joining the Partenopei and contributed six goals and four assists. He has also featured 30 times for North Macedonia, for which he has hit the net on seven occasions.


Barcelona and Real Madrid also battle for Florian Wirtz

Bayer 04 Leverkusen v VfL Wolfsburg - Bundesliga
Bayer 04 Leverkusen v VfL Wolfsburg - Bundesliga

Another star who has broken out this season is Leverkusen ace Florian Wirtz. It's no surprise that both La Liga giants also have their eyes on the blossoming star, who is just 18 and has already been called up to the German national team.

While Real Madrid might find it easier to pry the star from Bayer Leverkusen with financial prowess, Barcelona won't be able to flex their checkbooks in the same manner. Los Blancos don't want to lose out on another breakout star, having lost the race for Kai Havertz to Chelsea.

Florian Wirtz has been impressive so far this season, scoring four goals and making six assists in just nine Bundesliga appearances. On the international stage, the star has already picked up four appearances for Germany.


Edited by Rohit Mishra

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