Real Madrid have made initial steps to prise Christian Eriksen from Tottenham Hotspur this summer, and are preparing what they hope will be a £100m deal.
The struggling European champions are planning a necessary overhaul of their squad this summer, and want one of Eriksen or Chelsea’s Eden Hazard to be their new playmaker, but the Dane is seen as more gettable.
While the contracts of both are up in 2020, Spurs’ way of doing business means they are seen by Madrid as likelier to sell for a fee in the last year.
Barcelona had previously been hugely interested in Eriksen, and saw him as an alternative to Philippe Coutinho before they signed the Brazilian a year ago, but do not now plan any move.
That leaves the way clear for Madrid, and there has already been contact between intermediaries representing the parties.
Eriksen is stalling on a new deal with Spurs, despite the club being willing to offer him around £200,000 to £250,000 a week, but it is understood the player’s concerns are not financial.
At 26 years of age, the forward is very happy at Spurs but feels he might be at a point in his career when he should try a new football culture, and it is one of his ambitions to play for one of Spain’s major clubs in his prime.
Bayern Munich has not been completely ruled out, but sources close to the player feel that if Madrid or Barcelona cannot happen, Eriksen would stay at Spurs.
The Bernabeu hierarchy are highly conscious of the difficulty of negotiating with Daniel Levy, but feel the contract situation greatly leverages the situation, and that they may be able to do a deal this summer for under £100m.
Madrid plan a partial clear-out to fund such deals, with the struggling Isco one of the prime candidates to be sold.
Those involved think there is the possibility the Spanish playmaker could be put forward in a make-weight in such deals, as has already been broached in other negotiations where Madrid have tried to make deals happen.
Madrid's inner circle stepped up their transfer plans for the summer in December, with Eriksen set out as one of the clearest targets.
It is understood that, if it it came to a situation where Eriksen absolutely would not sign a new deal before the summer, Spurs would want in excess of £100m for any transfer.
Independent News Service