Real Madrid will not pursue a move for 23-year-old Sevilla defender Jules Kounde, with Antonio Rudiger reportedly their priority instead.
According to a report by Spanish outlet Defensa Central, Jules Kounde is no longer a key target for Real Madrid heading into next summer’s transfer window. Instead, the Spanish giants will prioritise signing Chelsea defender Antonio Rudiger on a Bosman move.
Jules Kounde joined Sevilla from Bordeaux in July 2019 and has since established himself as one of the best defenders in La Liga. A mainstay at the back for Los Nervionenses, the 23-year-old has also broken into the French national side and was also a part of Les Bleus’ triumphant UEFA Nations League campaign.
To date, Kounde has made 111 appearances for Sevilla, chipping in with six goals and three assists in the process. The player’s incredible progress has captured the attention of some of the biggest clubs in Europe, including Real Madrid.
The interest from Real Madrid is understandable, considering they chose to sign only one cover for Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane following their departures in the summer transfer window. While David Alaba has settled down quickly at the Santiago Bernabeu, the Austrian international and Eder Militao are the only reliable centre-backs at Carlo Ancelotti’s disposal.
Nacho can cover for the first-choice duo, but he is a backup option at best, as illustrated perfectly by his performances when featuring regularly. So, it behoves Real Madrid to sign a centre-back at the earliest opportunity, making Kounde a viable target.
However, the Spanish giants have decided to call off their pursuit of the 23-year-old, as his price tag has been deemed excessive. In addition, his frame is viewed as inadequate by Real Madrid when compared to another key target in Antonio Rudiger. That is why the La Liga heavyweights have decided to prioritise a move for the German international, who has already verbally agreed to join the club.
However, Kounde is still expected to leave Sevilla in next summer’s transfer window, with Chelsea likely to secure his services after agreeing on personal terms with him. Interestingly, Kounde could replace Rudiger at Chelsea once the German defender joins La Liga leaders Real Madrid.