Arch-rivals Manchester United and Manchester City are set to go head-to-head in a battle to sign Real Madrid’s star midfielder James Rodriguez.
According to a report by The Sun, James Rodriguez is on the lookout for a move out of Santiago Bernabeu as both Manchester clubs are ready to sign him immediately.
James has had limited chances under Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid, and it is evident that playing him is not exactly a priority for the manager. Players like Isco and Marco Asensio have pushed him down the pecking order.
There were reports of Manchester United pursuing the Colombian international, but now Manchester City are ready to match any bid made by the Red Devils. Chelsea were also said to be in the fray as Antonio Conte wants to sign enough players to juggle their Champions League commitments next season.
Both clubs are known to make quite a splash, and it will be interesting to see if James’ bid can get anywhere close to Paul Pogba’s record-shattering bid.
Also, Real Madrid have been chasing United’s goalkeeper David De Gea for quite some time now, and it was also reported that the club was ready to offer James Rodriguez in a deal for the Spanish keeper.
Rodriguez has excellent dribbling skills, and is sharply accurate when it comes to passing and shooting. He scored six goals for Columbia in the 2014 World Cup and also received a golden boot for being the top scorer back then.
In fact, that was when Real Madrid took notice and purchased him for £63million from Monaco. In his first two seasons for Real Madrid, James has recorded close to 20 goals and 25 assists.
His present numbers are not too impressive since he has scored merely nine times for Real this term. To be fair though, he did not get many chances to do any better.
However, he did score three goals in his last two games and managed to score one in the crucial El Clasico fixture. He also managed to score two goals as Real Madrid thumped Deportivo 6-2.
Despite registering impressive numbers for Real Madrid in previous seasons, James was benched for several big games. These include both legs of the Champions League quarterfinal with Bayern Munich and the semifinal matches against Atletico Madrid.
For the kind of potential he has, all he needs is some solid playing time, and that he can get in abundance at either Manchester United or Manchester City, considering how both clubs are in dire need of quality midfielders.
At Manchester United, he could carve out a unique place for himself since Michael Carrick’s form has been deteriorating, and they require a dependable midfielder who can can also put up strong attacking displays.
As far as Manchester City are concerned, they missed out on winning the title despite coming so close, and will be looking to assemble a deeper squad to do well in all competitions. Guardiola needs to build a side around Kompany and Gundogan, and James can be the ideal fit.