?Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois is reportedly keen on a move back to ?La Liga, with Spanish Champions Real Madrid keen on securing the Belgian stopper.
Courtois has been the first choice goalkeeper at the Blues for a few years now, following successive loan stints at Real Madrid’s rivals Atletico.
And with only 18 months left on his current ?Chelsea contract, the summer could well see the 25-year-old return back to the city he now calls home.
According to Spanish newspaper AS, the player’s representatives have told Los Blancos that he wishes to move to the club, and Madrid have told Courtois that they are interested – current first choice keeper Keylor Navas having endured a troublesome campaign between the sticks at the Bernabeu this term.
As for Chelsea, they see themselves with two options: either pay to keep Courtois and make him the world’s highest paid goalkeeper, or sign a replacement.
Should Courtois look to leave Stamford Bridge, the club would rather iron out details as soon as possible rather than delay any negotiations – even if the actual transfer wasn’t to take place until the summer.
Last summer saw the Belgian turn down an offer from his current club, after they failed to double his £100k-per-week deal. Instead, if Courtois insists on leaving, Chelsea manager Antonio Conte is believed to be a fan of Sevilla’s Sergio Rico, or Atletico’s Jan Oblak.
While ?Real Madrid look almost certain to sign Athletic Bilbao’s Kepa Arrizabalaga in January, bringing Courtois in would create an interesting fight for the number one spot under Zinedine Zidane – with both keepers keen to hold down the jersey at Real.