Everton and Arsenal are ‘willing to make an effort’ to sign James Rodríguez from Real Madrid this summer and could get him at a reduced price.
That’s according to Marca, who say the Colombian’s future is ‘far from Real Madrid’ at this moment in time.
The midfielder has made it clear that he wants to leave the club and Zinedine Zidane is in agreement, making that clear by continuing to leave Rodríguez out of his team.
Extending his stay at the Bernabeu does not seem ‘the best thing’ for the midfielder, but it is the player who has ‘the upper hand’ in the situation.
That is because of his contract, which is set to run out next summer, leaving him free to discuss a deal with clubs around Europe as of January.
Thus, Real Madrid know that if they don’t sell him in the next two months, they face losing him on a free, something they are keen to avoid.
Therefore the ‘logical thing’ according to Marca is that Florentino Pérez agrees to a sale but at terms far below what he was asking a year ago.
At that point, the Real Madrid chief was demanding €45-50m from both Napoli and Atlético Madrid, but now he would be ‘practically obliged’ to reduce and that to €20-25m.
However, there is every chance that any suitor could pressure Real Madrid to lower that further knowing they need to get rid of him this summer.
His future looks more likely to be in the Premier League than elsewhere, mainly as he earns around €7m a year, a figure he knows he can’t get elsewhere but will be keen to get as close to.
There are several teams in England ‘willing to make an effort’ to sign him, and Everton and Arsenal are among those named.
Everton’s interest comes courtesy of Carlo Ancelotti, who is described as Rodríguez’s ‘biggest supporter’ having taken him to Real Madrid in 2014.
He also signed him on loan at Bayern Munich and tried to take him to Napoli last summer.
Where Arsenal’s interest comes from isn’t mentioned, although it has been established that Mikel Arteta is keen to overhaul the Gunners midfield this summer
In that light, perhaps he views a player with Rodríguez’s experience as ideal for that, especially if they ship out Mesut Özil.
As yet, it’s not known if either club has made a move, but should they do so, it seems a little haggling could get them a bargain.