Real’s search for a striker — who fits the bill?
Jose Mourinho’s constant pressuring of Real Madrid for another striker has finally paid off, with director general Jorge Valdano saying they were in the market for a number nine.
In the past, many top clubs would have been worried that the world’s richest club by income according to the Deloitte’s Football Money League, would be turning the heads of their prize assets.
This time, however, Real have set themselves an even tougher task. They only want to borrow a striker on loan until the end of the season when Gonzalo Higuain should have recovered from the back surgery he underwent on Tuesday.
Their only other recognised striker, Karim Benzema, “lacks a hunger for goals,” Mourinho said after another disappointing display from the Frenchman in the King’s Cup on Thursday. He has only scored once in La Liga this season.
The Spanish media quickly cranked into gear with a shopping list of possible targets.
1. Manchester City’s Emmanuel Adebayor leads the betting at present, ticking all the right boxes. A powerful target man in the mould of former Mourinho favourites Didier Drogba and Diego Milito, he is surplus to requirements at City and eligible to play in the Champions League.
2. Bayern Munich’s Miroslav Klose is out of contract with the German club at the end of the season and spending most of his time warming the bench. He is an experienced goalscorer, but he would not be able to play in Europe.
3. Sevilla’s Luis Fabiano has dropped down the pecking order with new coach Gregorio Manzano but the club have often driven a hard bargain with sales to Real in the past.
4. Hercules striker Nelson Valdez has made his mark in La Liga with seven goals so far this season. The promoted club could be tempted to cash in.
It would be a big ask for any of these players to slot straight in to Madrid’s team and produce the goods, but as everyone already knows that the man who scores all the goals at Real Madrid anyway is Cristiano Ronaldo.
He has scored 30 goals in all competitions to date. So who needs a centre-forward?
PHOTO: Manchester City’s Emmanuel Adebayor walks on the field during their Europa League match against Red Bull Salzburg at The City of Manchester Stadium, December 1, 2010. REUTERS/Phil Noble