Chelsea are reportedly ready to sell Thibaut Courtois, a summer target for Real Madrid, after ending negotiations over a new deal with the Belgian.
According to a report by Sky Sports, negotiations over tying Thibaut Courtois down to a new deal have completely halted, and Chelsea are now open to selling him in the summer transfer window. Real Madrid hold a long-standing interest in the Belgian custodian, with PSG also believed to be in the fray.
Courtois is one of the goalkeepers Real Madrid have had their sights firmly on for a long time, with the position between the sticks mired in uncertainty for a long time. In the weeks leading to the end of the 2017-18 season though, it was firmly believed that the 26-year-old was ready to commit to a new deal at Chelsea.
The shot stopper, himself, had insisted that he was in talks with Chelsea over signing a renewal, even though he admitted that his “heart was in the Spanish capital”, which had always kept a move to Real Madrid a possibility.
But, Chelsea seem to be going through their most turbulent phase under the ownership of Roman Abramovich. Not only did the Blues fail to secure Champions League football, manager Antonio Conte’s future is up in the air, and plans for their new world-class stadium have been put on hold after Abramovich was denied work permit in the UK.
With a heavy air of uncertainty all over the club, it is believed that several star players could be on their way out of Chelsea in the summer. And, it looks like Courtois could be the first in line to head out the exit door at Stamford Bridge, which will hand Real Madrid a huge boost in their bid to sign him.
Real Madrid also find themselves in a bit of a soup after Zinedine Zidane quit as the manager in shocking circumstances, mere days after guiding the club to its 13th Champions League crown. With the Frenchman gone, Keylor Navas’s spot in the dressing room could be in trouble, with the former boss said to be one of the few in support of keeping him at the Bernabeu.
Indeed, the Costa Rica captain has been very inconsistent over the last two seasons, and has been part of the massive defensive problem troubling Real Madrid during this period, which explains why Los Blancos have been heavily linked with several goalkeepers in the last few summer windows, with Chelsea number one Courtois believed to be a top target.
In recent weeks, Alisson had emerged as an option, with Courtois and David de Gea believed to be inaccessible. But, with contract talks between the Belgian and Chelsea now coming to a grinding halt, we could see Real Madrid jump back into action to finally secure his services.
Los Blancos will not have a clear run at Courtois though, with PSG also in the race to sign him as they look to sign a more assured goalkeeper than Alphonse Areola and Kevin Trapp. It now remains to be seen if Real Madrid can finally succeed in bringing the 26-year-old over from Chelsea back to the Spanish capital, with this possibly their best ever chance to do so.
Meanwhile, Chelsea will now set their attention towards signing a replacement for Courtois, with Alisson a possible target. Bringing a big name goalkeeper to Stamford Bridge could prove to be a bit of a hurdle though, with Champions League football not on offer for next season.