It is almost unbelievable that Real Madrid are not going to make a single signing this summer. The club which is most famous for its Galacticos era, and has lost a couple of superstars in the last few years, is opting to continue with the squad which won La Liga last year, and save its money for next summer when they can make a blockbuster signing. The impact of the pandemic has been keenly felt, but some astute financial management, along with the sales of a bunch of unwanted players, means that Madrid may actually be able to turn a small profit this year, when most other clubs are facing multi-million dollar losses. President Florentino Perez deserves credit for steering the club through these uncertain times, but there are also concerns that the inactivity in the transfer market could leave Zinedine Zidane’s squad vulnerable to injury and loss of form, and dependent on a few key players for performances.
It must be noted that Madrid are committed to a huge, expensive renovation of their stadium, the Santiago Bernabeu, and so saving money is essential at the moment. Los Blancos have managed to rid themselves of the salary of James Rodriguez, sending the Colombian to Everton on a free transfer and not for €25 million as previously reported. Still, that will represent a considerable saving, as will whatever they are saving on the deal which sent Gareth Bale back to Tottenham. Spurs are not paying the entirety of his salary for the duration of the loan, with Madrid picking up around 60% of his wages, but even the 40% or so saved will add up, along with the fact that Zidane clearly wanted to be rid of the Welshman, and has done so for a while. Along with this, a number of other fringe players have been sold, such as Sergio Reguilon (to Tottenham), Brahim Diaz (to AC Milan), Achraf Hakimi (to Inter Milan), Oscar Rodriguez (to Sevilla), Jorge de Frutos and Dani Gomez (both to Levante), and Javi Sanchez (to Real Valladolid). In addition, they are also getting a loan fee for Takefusa Kubo while he is at Villarreal. Adding all of this up means that Madrid have managed to bring in around €100 million this summer in just transfer fees, on top of the saved wages from these players and the likes of Bale and Rodriguez. The thinking is that Perez wants to bring in Kylian Mbappe next year from PSG, which will likely require a world-record transfer fee, and so money needs to be saved this season to be able to fund that deal.
Despite this lack of transfer activity, the crisis at rivals Barcelona has completely overshadowed the football scene in Spain, and so it is no surprise that Madrid are favourites to retain La Liga at the portal esportbetting.net and other betting operators around Europe. Zidane still has the likes of Karim Benzema, Eden Hazard, Luka Modric, Toni Kroos and Sergio Ramos to call upon, along with a bunch of young stars who will need to step up and show that they can be counted on to lead the club into a glorious future.