Real Madrid youngster set to take exit-linked veteran's place in first-team squad next season - Reports

Real Madrid are prepared for life without Nacho Fernandez
Real Madrid are prepared for life without Nacho Fernandez

Real Madrid starlet Rafa Marin is reportedly set to take his place in the squad as a replacement for captain Nacho Fernandez from the 2024-25 season. The young centre-back has enjoyed an impressive spell on loan at Deportivo Alaves, and the club wishes to have him back at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Veteran defender Nacho has spent his entire professional career at Real Madrid, making over 300 appearances since his debut in 2011. Now 34, the Spaniard is set to be out of a contract at the end of the season and has held no talks with the club over a new deal.

Nacho Fernandez is aiming to end his career at the Santiago Bernabeu on a high with a sixth UEFA Champions League when they face Borussia Dortmund on Saturday, June 1. As per AS (via Madrid Universal), the Spaniard is said to be keen on a move to the MLS, where several La Liga legends already play their trade.

With a significant amount of money set to go for potentially signing Kylian Mbappe, Los Blancos have decided to look inward for solutions. A part of this is to save money on a transfer for a new centre-back by introducing Rafa Marin to the first team next season.

Marin, a La Fabrica product, spent the 2023-24 season on loan at Alaves, where he proved his worth and played 33 times in La Liga. The 22-year-old helped the side secure a respectable 10th-place finish and has immediately been thrust into the attention of Carlo Ancelotti in his parent club.

Rafa Marin was linked with a move to Bayer Leverkusen after his impressive season, but will likely not be allowed to move away now. The young Spaniard will hope to impress when he returns for pre-season training and keep his place in the squad.

Real Madrid legend expresses dream of retiring at club

Real Madrid legend Luka Modric has revealed that he intends to retire at the Spanish club after a glorious career in Spain. The Croatian midfielder has won every trophy available in his time at the Santiago Bernabeu, also picking up the 2018 Ballon d'Or.

Modric saw midfield partner Toni Kroos announce his retirement this season and has revealed that while he is not yet retiring, he hopes to do so at the club. The 39-year-old told El Partizado de Cope that he wants to have a farewell like that of Kroos at the club:

“The decision on my future is made but I can't tell you yet. I have always said I want to retire at Real Madrid, this is what I really want”.
“This would be a dream, this is my home, the club of my life. I want a farewell like Toni Kroos."

This season, Modric became the oldest outfield player to turn out for the club in a league game at over 38 years old. He can also become the outright most decorated player in the history of the club if he stays for the 2024-25 season, having earned 25 trophies so far.

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