Real Madrid have long been linked with a move to Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea with rumours persisting since a proposed deal in the summer of 2015 broke down at the eleventh hour.
While Madrid were left cursing a fax machine blunder, they have kept faith in their number one Keylor Navas in the years since. Under constant pressure and scrutiny, the Costa Rican international has helped his side to three straight Champions League titles.
However, despite the European success, the goalkeeping position has long been viewed as a ‘problem area’ for Los Blancos. In January, they attempted to land Athletic Bilbao goalkeeper Kepa Arrizabalaga before the Spain international eventually signed a new long-term contract at the San Mames.
Courtois back to Madrid?
Another long-term target is Chelsea shot-stopper Thibaut Courtois, who has still not penned a new contract at Stamford Bridge despite his current deal expiring next summer. He said this to TV station La Sexta:
“A return to Spain is attractive for me.
“My own personal situation is the main driver for my desire to return and if that does not happen now, then it will in a few years from now.
“Right now I’m calm and happy at Chelsea, when you play football at this level you must concentrate only on the games and not on anything off the pitch.
“I don’t want to focus on contract talks as it will impact on my performances.”
The Belgian international spent three seasons in the Spanish capital between 2011 and 2014 whilst on loan with Atletico Madrid, whom he helped to win the Europa League, Copa del Rey, and La Liga, while he also featured in the 2014 Champions League showpiece.
He fathered two children with his now ex-girlfriend and both still reside in Madrid.
The links are logical from both a personal and professional point of view, but how genuine they are is another matter. There is little sign in the Spanish press that Madrid will move for Courtois this summer however the situation should be monitored because the keeper’s contract expires in 2019.
Navas is still the number one at the Bernabeu and is likely to remain so through to next season. Much can, and probably will change at Stamford Bridge regarding the managerial situation and general position of the club off the pitch.
Courtois may well return to Madrid one day and the links will not go away as long as he puts off signing a new contract.
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