Real Madrid midfielder Isco has rejected a contract extension offer from the club, and could be set to leave the club at the end of the season
Spanish television station La Sexta have reported that Real Madrid midfielder Isco has a “foot and a half” outside the Santiago Bernabeu. The Spain international rejected a new contract from Los Blancos two months ago, and he could be set to leave the club at the end of the season.
Isco has played 171 games with Real Madrid, scoring 26 times while assisting a further 39 goals in the period. However, the Real Madrid journey hasn’t quite been as fulfilling for the midfielder as he would have dreamed of. He has failed to nail down a regular spot in the first team picture under Zinedine Zidane.
The 24-year-old has shown that he is equally adept at playing in a midfield three as he is in wide roles, but has often struggled to start ahead of stalwarts like Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Gareth Bale.
It has been more of the same old story for the Spaniard this season as well, with Isco managing to start just 12 of the 34 matches that Real Madrid have played in all competitions, scoring four times and assisting as many goals.
Now, it looks like the midfielder is ready to move on from the club to play first team opportunities elsewhere. The report states that Real Madrid put an offer on the table in November, but Isco wanted more assurances of a regular role in the team.
He didn’t subsequently get that, as a result of which he decided to turn down the offer from the club in Deccember. The report added that Isco has now decided to listen to offers and “does not want to negotiate with Real Madrid. He wants to leave on June 30.”
With less than 18 months to run of his current deal Real Madrid could be eager to abide by Isco’s wishes and sell him in the summer transfer window to command a decent transfer fee.
Meanwhile, Spanish publication Don Balon have reported that Manchester City might be edging closer to signing the midfielder after they revealed that Pep Guardiola and the Citizens have a secret pact to bring Isco to the Etihad Stadium in the summer.
The report states that the agreement has been in the place for a long time now and with Isco rejecting a new deal with Real Madrid, City are now ready to make a move for the Spaniard. They further add that Isco is set to receive a generous compensation when he moves to the Etihad Stadium.
It is important to note, though, that Pep Guardiola has a lot of options to choose from in attacking midfield, with the likes of Raheem Sterling, Nolito, Leroy Sane, David Silva, Kevin De Bruyne and Jesus Navas all competing for places in the starting lineup.
However, Silva has shown signs of slowing down this season, while Sterling has blown hot and cold in his City career, often frustrating with his inconsistent performances. Leroy Sane is still establishing himself in the first team setup and has impressed in patches, while Nolito has also been inconsistent.
Meanwhile, Navas seems to be on the periphery of the first team picture. Displacing City’s talisman De Bruyne will be difficult, but Isco can certainly earn a place for himself if he can turn in consistent performances for City and make an impression on Guardiola.
He has previously also been linked with the likes of Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal, and it now remains to be seen if either of these clubs are still interested in making a move for the midfielder or whether some other club enters the picture to challenge Manchester City with Isco certainly out the Bernabeu exit door.