Real Madrid Ready to Chase a ‘Number Nine’ in January to Boost Attacking Options

?Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane is reportedly ready to welcome a new striker to the Bernabeu as he looks to add depth to the squad and competition for the famed BBC front-line, particularly fellow countryman and known favourite Karim Benzema.

According to Marca, Real are seeking a player who primarily ‘adds presence and threat in the box’.

FC Internazionale v AC Chievo Verona - Serie A

Both the Spanish publication and L’Equipe in France have named Mauro Icardi, a player long linked with Real already, as being on the radar for Zidane and the Madrid hierarchy.

The Inter Milan captain has scored 17 times in 19 Serie A games so far this season and would certainly be the obvious choice when it comes to filling the ‘number nine’ long term.

The problem, Marca highlights, is that Icardi is tied down to a lengthy contract in Milan – due to run until 2021 – and the Nerazzurri are trying to extend it longer still. The potential price quoted is €100m, which would put the Argentine among the most five most expensive players ever.

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Tottenham talisman Harry Kane, scorer of a world leading 56 goals in 2017, is another target. He would also come with an enormous price tag and there are doubts over how he might adapt to Spanish football, famously so different to England.

RB Leipzig forward Timo Werner is also an option. Marca points out the problems he has had with his ears – the German complained of dizziness during a particularly loud Champions League encounter against Besiktas earlier this season.

Alexis Sanchez, available as a free agent at the end of the season, or for likely less than €40m this month, completes the possible targets. It may be that the former Barcelona star is more attainable if only because current club Arsenal would probably rather sell to Real than help strengthen domestic rivals Manchester City.

Despite his potential problems, Marca names Werner as the most likely to join Real in January.

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