Ghana's No. 1

Raiola's Real Madrid revolution

Published on: 08 April 2020

The market may have changed, but Mino Raiola will still continue to be at the heart of elite transfers.

His clients are some of the biggest names in the game and many of them have headed up important projects at some of Europe's top clubs.

Others could be on the move this summer, and Raiola has become a reference point for Real Madrid's business plans.

"My relationship with Real Madrid is very good and I wanted to get on with them," the super-agent told MARCA a few weeks ago.

"I hope that one day I can take a top player to Real Madrid. At the moment, I have [Alphonse] Areola, but it's only a loan.

"I want to take a standout player [there] and I'm going to try to do it this summer. It would be a proud moment for me and my players, because Real Madrid are a great club."

This message was very well received among Real Madrid directors, who are remaining vigilant over the chances of football returning to normal and big-money transfers coming back on the table.

Out of all of Raiola's clients - who include Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Gianluigi Donnarumma, Romelu Lukaku and Marco Verratti - there are three names in particular that are being mentioned in the same breath as Real Madrid.

Erling Haaland

Erling Haaland is Real Madrid's top transfer target this summer, so an improvement in the relationship with Raiola is welcome news.

Los Blancos have followed the 19-year-old for months now but had some doubts over whether he'd be able to perform at the top level, however those doubts have been expelled.

The need for another No.9 in Zinedine Zidane's squad has forced Real Madrid to look for a striker in the market and Haaland is the first choice.

Paul Pogba

Raiola was also involved in talks with Los Blancos last summer as Zidane asked after Paul Pogba, but the failure to sell Gareth Bale and James Rodriguez left the club without the funds to complete the transfer or pay the midfielder's wages.

The situation is different now, with the Frenchman's price falling as his contract - which expires in 2021 - continues to run down.

Matthijs de Ligt

The third name being discussed at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu is that of Matthijs de Ligt, who hasn't fully settled in at Juventus after his move there from Ajax last summer.

As the Turin side try to combat the financial implications of coronavirus, they could look to offload some of their top earners.

There have been rumours that the centre-back has asked to leave Juve and Real Madrid are one of the teams linked with his signature.


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