5 potential replacements for Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid
After nine years in the Spanish capital, it looks as if Cristiano Ronaldo’s tryst with Real Madrid is finally coming to an end. He is closing in on a move to Italy with Juventus, and reports are suggesting that he has already agreed to move to Turin after they launched a £88 million bid. If he leaves now, he will go down as one of the greatest players to wear the famous white shirt, and probably one of the greatest that we have seen in football history. His record with Real is nothing short of incredible. He made 438 appearances for the club in all competitions and scored an extraordinary 450 goals.
It may be a surprise to know that in his nine seasons at the biggest club in the world, he has won only two La Liga titles. He has, however, won four Champions League titles at the Bernabeu, including in each of the last three seasons, becoming the first team to achieve that feat since Bayern Munich in 1976.
It has been an incredible spell for him, as far as personal honors are concerned as well. He won four Ballon D’or’s while at Real Madrid, taking his tally to five, level with Lionel Messi. He is also Real’s all-time leading goalscorer, as well as the top scorer in all UEFA competitions. He may be 33, but he is still a key player in this Madrid side. He will be a massive loss, but here are five players who could replace him.
#1 Eden Hazard (Chelsea)
There have been links in the past. He has made no secret of his interest in playing in Spain. He has been with the Blues for six years, but having seen them miss out on qualification for the Champions League last season, he may feel that it is time for him to move on from Stamford Bridge. You could argue that he hasn’t been given the opportunity to play with genuine world-class talent in England, and this is something he could get with Real.
He is 27 now; approaching the peak of his career. This would suit Real, as he would act as the natural replacement for Ronaldo out on that left-wing. Undoubtedly, the fee will be high, and if they do move for Hazard, it is likely that they will have to pay over £100 million for his services. But Hazard is a world-class player, and there aren’t many of them out there. If Real want a readymade replacement to Ronaldo, they won’t come much closer than Hazard.