Meanwhile, Los Blancos are planning a move for a Manchester City striker in 2024. Elsewhere, Rodrygo has opened up on rejecting Barcelona. On that note, here's a look at the key Real Madrid transfer stories as on June 18, 2022:
Real Madrid planning 2024 move for Erling Haaland
Real Madrid are planning to target Erling Haaland in 2024, AS has reported. The Norwegian striker joined Manchester City from Borussia Dortmund this summer. The 21-year-old has admirers at the Santiago Bernabeu, but the club refrained from targeting the player this summer. Karim Benzema’s breathtaking form would have made it very difficult to include Haaland in the playing XI.
The La Liga giants wanted the Norwegian to stay at Dortmund for another season and were planning to sign him in 2023. However, the 21-year-old was desperate to leave the Bundesliga this year, and a move to the Etihad appealed to him. Los Blancos are unperturbed by the turn of events and remain interested in his signature.
With Benzema going from strength to strength, the Spanish giants have simply deferred their plans to sign Haaland. The Norwegian reportedly has a €150 million release clause in his City contract, which Madrid plan to trigger in 2024. By then, Benzema is expected to slow down, and Haaland could step up to replace him at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Rodrygo opens up on rejecting Barcelona
Rodrygo has said that he turned down Barcelona to sign for Real Madrid. The 21-year-old joined the La Liga giants from Santos in 2019, but it now appears the Blaugrana were also looking to secure his signature. His father apparently had a deal agreed with the Blaugrana, and only Rodrygo's signature was missing.
Speaking on the Jota Jota podcast (via Mundo Deportivo), Rodrygo recalled the circumstances why he chose Los Blancos over Barcelona.
“I arrived home after a match. I had a shirt from Real Madrid in my house, and my father came into the room with that shirt and another one of Barcelona, and he said ‘now, choose’. And I chose the Real Madrid one," said Rodrygo.
Rodrygo also recalled learning the nuances of the game after scoring his first goal for the Spanish giants.
“In my debut with Real Madrid, in pre-season, I scored a goal from a free-kick and celebrated. When I got to the dressing room, Marcelo and Nacho said to me: ‘if you’re losing, and you celebrate, get the ball, and get to the centre circle, you don’t celebrate it'," said Rodrygo.
Dean Saunders advises Gareth Bale to join Newcastle United
Former Liverpool striker Dean Saunders has advised Gareth Bale to join Newcastle United. The Welshman will leave Los Blancos this summer at the end of his contract. The 32-year-old is yet to make a decision on his next destination but wants to play regular football ahead of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar later this year.
Speaking to talkSPORT, Saunders said that Bale would fit right in at St. James' Park
"If I could pick a club for him to go to now, I'd say sign for Newcastle. They've got a project; they're going in the right direction – he would slot in. The fans right now in Newcastle, because I've been there, and I worked there – and I realise how much they love the club – right now, they could sell 80,000 season tickets," said Saunders.
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