Real Madrid captain and defender Marcelo, whose contract expires in the summer, is reportedly a transfer target for Brazilian bigwigs Palmeiras and Flamengo.

According to a report from Catalan publication El Nacional, Real Madrid captain Marcelo is all set to call it quits at the Santiago Bernabeu, with his contract closing in on an expiry, with Palmeiras and Flamengo hoping to snap him up.

The 33-year-old Marcelo joined Real Madrid in January 2007 from boyhood club Fluminense in Brazil and soon established himself as a regular starter for the Spanish capital giants. In a matter of a few years, the Brazilian became one of the best left-backs in Europe, as he played an integral role in all the success that Los Blancos achieved over the last decade.

A veteran of 533 appearances, Marcelo has scored 38 goals and set up 101 more for his teammates during his time at the Bernabeu. However, the 33-year-old’s game-time has been on the wane over the past couple of seasons, with Ferland Mendy taking over as the first-choice left-back in the squad.

Despite Marcelo being named club captain this season following the departure of Sergio Ramos, he has constantly been overlooked by Carlo Ancelotti and understandably so, as the defender has shown signs of age catching up with him and has struggled physically. As a result, the veteran star has made just five appearances across all competitions this term.

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With his contract expiring at the end of the season, Real Madrid have no intentions to offer him an extension. It is claimed that club president Florentino Perez believes that Marcelo, who will be turning 34 in May next year, is past his prime. The club are ready to move on from the Brazilian defender and are even preparing a grand farewell for him when the time comes for a parting of ways.

Marcelo, for his part, is hoping to secure a return to his former club, Fluminense. However, he has new suitors in Palmeiras and Flamengo, who are also interested in landing the 33-year-old.

The report claims that both the Brazilian outfits are plotting to start negotiations with the left-back in January when he enters the final six months of his deal and will be able to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with foreign clubs. But, with Marcelo having his heart set on a return to Fluminense, both Palmeiras and Flamengo will need to put up a lucrative offer to change his stance.

As things stand, Marcelo’s time at Real Madrid is coming to an end, and a move back to his homeland Brazil seems to be on the cards. Only time will tell which club the veteran star decides to join when his contract runs out.

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