Real Madrid have reportedly been handed a major boost in pursuit of Youri Tielemans, with Barcelona unlikely to be able to afford him.

According to a report by Catalan outlet El Nacional, Real Madrid could have taken a step closer to signing Youri Tielemans from Leicester City. That is because Barcelona appear set to bow out of the race to sign the 24-year-old playmaker, who is set to leave Leicester City in next summer’s transfer window.

Youri Tielemans joined Leicester City from AS Monaco in January 2019 and has since made some massive strides in his career. Initially signed on loan by the Foxes, the move to the King Power Stadium was made permanent in the subsequent summer transfer window.

A mainstay in midfield for Leicester, Tielemans has made 121 appearances for Leicester, chipping in with 19 goals and 22 assists along the way. The 24-year-old has also be critical in their FA Cup success last season as well as the Community Shield triumph. His progress has invariably captured the attention of some of the biggest clubs in Europe, including Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The interest from Real Madrid is understandable, considering they are keen on laying down a succession plan for Luka Modric. With Toni Kroos also on the wrong side of 30 and approaching the final phase of his career, it will be prudent of the Merengues to sign a midfielder despite the arrival of Eduardo Camavinga in the summer, especially with Dani Ceballos and Isco surplus to requirements.

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To that end, Tielemans is a viable target for Real Madrid, although recent reports have suggested that Barcelona are providing stiff competition to their bitter rivals in pursuit of the Leicester City midfielder.

Like Real Madrid, Barcelona can do with a midfield addition, seeing as Sergio Busquets is closing in on the twilight of his career. So, while Gavi and Nico Gonzalez have emerged as viable options for the long-term future for the Blaugrana, another addition in the form of Tielemans would serve them well, which explains their interest in the 24-year-old.

However, Barcelona appear set to bow out of the race to sign Tielemans, as they might be unable to afford his valuation. Indeed, amid their financial crunch, Barcelona are likelier to pursue cost-effective solutions, which Tielemans will not be. Therefore, Real Madrid have been handed a boost in pursuit of the Leicester City star and it remains to be seen if they make their move for him soon.

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