Real Madrid Transfer News: Zinedine Zidane keen on Manchester United's Paul Pogba
Spanish outlet Marca have reported that Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane is still insistent on the signing of Manchester United's Paul Pogba despite the board's reluctance to do so. Pogba, who joined the Red Devils for a then-world record fee of £89.3m from Juventus has made his desire for a 'new challenge' known before the start of the ongoing season and is yet to renew his contract with the 13-time Premier League winners.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has made it abundantly clear that he fully expects Pogba to stay in Manchester but reports from Spain and elsewhere linking him to a move to Los Blancos have shown no signs of dying down.
Apart from Manchester United's reluctance to part ways with Pogba, another major stumbling block preventing a potential deal is the fact that Los Blancos' board aren't convinced by the Frenchman. According to Marca, they view the World Cup winner as a 'great' player but aren't ready to pay the estimated fee of over €120m for his services. Added to that, Pogba is said to command a salary of €16m a year, which is another potential hurdle for both sides.
Furthermore, the emergence of Federico Valverde and Martin Odegaard (on loan at Real Sociedad) have complicated the situation. The Uruguayan has been an integral part of the first team in the ongoing season and has delivered some crucial performances alongside Toni Kroos and Casemiro from the heart of midfield. Odegaard, on the other hand, has been one of the standout performers in LaLiga Santander this season and has had a stellar season so far.
Dani Ceballos is another name that Real Madrid have on their books as the Spaniard is set to return to the capital club after his loan at Arsenal expires.
Both Zidane and Pogba are adamant on the United midfielder moving to the Bernabeu and the 3-time Champions League-winning manager is set to demand the signing at any cost. Pogba's agent Mino Raiola is also said to be keen on forcing a move to Madrid.
But with both clubs being stern in their approaches to the situations, Marca say that the signing looks improbable at the moment.
The other potential options that the 13-time European champions are monitoring closely are Tottenham Hotspur's Christian Eriksen and Ajax's Donny van de Beek. The Danish international is out of contract at the end of the 2019/20 season which means that a Bosman transfer could be on the cards.
The Dutchman, on the other hand, has expressed his interest in playing for Zidane's side and has even spoken of their interest in the player.
Considering that Real Madrid haven't made a single midfield signing in the last two summers, they are almost certain to bolster that area of the pitch come summer 2020. It will be interesting to see how their midfield situation pans out.