Tomás Roncero / Carmen Colino
Real Madrid have made the signing of the Sevilla left-back Alberto Moreno a priority for next season.
The Spain international would be a replacement for Fabio Coentrao, who is unsettled at the club.
Madrid believe the 21-year-old would be the perfect candidate to compete with Marcelo for a place in the position, as he is the full-back with the brightest future in Spanish football and is part of the generation that won the 2013 under-21 European Championship in Israel, sharing a dressing room then with other Madrid players such as Álvaro Morata, Asier Illarramendi, Dani Carvajal and Isco.
Sevilla, well aware of how attractive Moreno is to the big clubs, acted swiftly in the summer and gave him a professional contract until 2018 with a buy-out clause of 30 million euros.
Madrid are not the only club interested in signing Moreno.
Rafael Benitez’s Napoli would also like to sign the youngster.
Sevilla have reportedly told the Italians they want 18 million euros but are believed to be prepared to negotiate a transfer for 15 million. However, it is understood Moreno would like to stay in Spain and his priority is Madrid.
And this newspaper has learned that people close to the player in Seville are certain he will be playing for Madrid next season.
As AS revealed last October, Moreno came close to signing for Real Madrid Castilla last year. The possibility of him joining Castilla as a free agent emerged in March 2013, but Paco de Gracia, head of scouting at Madrid, rejected this move because, according to sources, he did not believe the full-back had the talent to play for Madrid.
On Thursday Sevilla’s sporting director Monchi told the club’s official radio station he was not aware any club had made an offer for the defender.
He said: “There have been no concrete offers for Alberto Moreno so far. No doubt directors from all the top clubs know all about him. I have heard about the interest from Napoli, but we haven’t received any offers and we are relaxed about it.”