James Rodriguez’s options as Real Madrid outcast heads for exit door

Misc


James Rodriguez has only featured once for Real Madrid since LaLiga returned… with the playmaker’s time there up will a move to rivals Atletico Madrid, a reunion with Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus or even a switch to Wolves be his next destination?

  • James Rodriguez is set to exit Real Madrid this summer after falling out of favour
  • The 29-year-old has been linked with a move to Manchester United in the past
  • Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti has worked with the Colombian beforehand 

The only thing clear about James Rodriguez‘s future is that it will not be at Real Madrid.

With Eden Hazard injured Zinedine Zidane could have done with the Colombia international last Sunday away at Athletic Bilbao but he understood the player when James told him he didn’t want to travel.

‘He is out because he wanted to be out,’ said Zidane. Sources close to James said he was mentally worn-down by constantly being over-looked by the Real Madrid coach and he knew, even without Hazard, he would still only get minutes if Rodrygo Goes, Vinicius, Marco Asensio, Lucas Vazquez and even Gareth Bale had all already been explored as options. Zidane understood the frustration.

James Rodriguez’s time at Real Madrid is seemingly over with the playmaker set to leave

The 29-year-old midfielder has featured just once for Real since LaLiga returned

The 29-year-old midfielder has featured just once for Real since LaLiga returned

The club’s priority is that Rodriguez finds himself a club as soon as possible. He has only featured once since La Liga returned. In times of the financial belt tightening, Real Madrid are likely to take what ever they can get for the 29-year-old this summer just to get him off the wage bill in the final year of his contract.

It’s true he has lost his way at Madrid but he is not the first player that that has happened to. He may still have his best years ahead of him at the right club, so Sportsmail asks the big question: which club will that be?

He refused to travel as part of Zinedine Zidane's (right) squad for the trip to Athletic Bilbao

He refused to travel as part of Zinedine Zidane’s (right) squad for the trip to Athletic Bilbao

Manchester United

There is interest from the player in making this happen but because United got burned with Alexis Sanchez they are likely to steer clear of cast-offs from La Liga’s big two for a while. 

Bruno Fernandez is younger and better. And it seems unlikely James will end up at Old Trafford.

A move to Manchester United appears unlikely as they have Bruno Fernandes (right) already

A move to Manchester United appears unlikely as they have Bruno Fernandes (right) already

Wolves

This feels more feasible. Jorge Mendes’ links to Wolves and their greater willingness to move the furniture of the team to accommodate James’ flair make this a possibility. 

Madrid’s financial squeeze will see them take a reduced fee so if the Colombian can agree wages with Wolves (and he will have to come down considerably from his £7million) he could be Old Gold before the new season kicks-off.

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo (left) would welcome the Colombian's talents at Molineux

Wolves boss Nuno Espirito Santo (left) would welcome the Colombian’s talents at Molineux

Atletico Madrid

He could have joined Diego Simone last summer but Atletico thrashed Real Madrid in pre-season and the idea of selling them one of their highest profile players suddenly didn’t seem like such a good idea. 

He would still be open to the idea of going to the other side of the city but Atletico’s financial position is such that wages would be a problem. They have also discovered in Marcos Llorente (a player that Real Madrid did let Atletico Madrid buy off them last summer) an attacking midfielder/striker for the next decade. It seems an unlikely switch.

Former Real team-mate Marcos Llorente has excelled at Atletico Madrid since joining this term

Former Real team-mate Marcos Llorente has excelled at Atletico Madrid since joining this term

Everton

It’s certainly true that Carlo Ancelotti got a decent tune out of James Rodriguez at Real Madrid and they worked well together at Bayern Munich.

He needs plenty of reinforcements and James would be a statement of intent going into the new season but the price will have to tumble enough to make them join the bidding. James would be top earner at Everton on his current money. 

The only way Everton could afford him would be if they did not have to pay a transfer fee. A loan could work. International team-mate Yerry Mina would certainly help him fit in at Goodison.

Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti knows Rodriguez well having coached him at Bayern Munich

Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti knows Rodriguez well having coached him at Bayern Munich

Ancelotti was also his manager at Real and bought him to the club from Monaco in 2014

Ancelotti was also his manager at Real and bought him to the club from Monaco in 2014

Juventus

Last season Cristiano Ronaldo seemed to be tugging at the strings to see if he could get his pal to join him in Italy. 

Juventus are no longer in a position to make a bold move. So this one seems doomed to disappear under the cloud of post-coronavirus shutdown football. 

There has been interest from Napoli in the past too but it looks an unlikely destination this time around.

Last season Cristiano Ronaldo (right) seemed keen for Juventus to bring Rodriguez to Italy

Last season Cristiano Ronaldo (right) seemed keen for Juventus to bring Rodriguez to Italy

The pair were team-mates at Real - winning two Champions Leagues and one La Liga together

The pair were team-mates at Real – winning two Champions Leagues and one La Liga together 

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