PETE JENSON: Real Madrid have eight potential replacements for injured Thibaut Courtois…David de Gea is the most obvious pick while Chelsea’s Kepa Arrizabalaga, Sevilla’s Yassine Bounou and David Soria of Getafe are all in contention
- Thibaut Courtois is likely to miss the entire season after suffering an ACL injury
- David de Gea, Yassine Bounou and Kepa Arrizabalaga are possible replacements
- Click here to watch Mail Sport’s brand new show ‘It’s All Kicking Off’ in full
Real Madrid have lost arguably their second most important player just three days before they play their first game of the season after Thibaut Courtois suffered a serious knee injury in training. and now
The Belgian shot-stopper could miss the entire 2023-24 campaign, and Madrid need to act fast to replace him adequately.
Is David de Gea’s move to Madrid finally happening after all those false starts or will Madrid turn their noses up at taking someone discarded by Manchester United? Mail Sport looks at their options.
David de Gea
The benefits are obvious – he would be happy to sign just a one-year deal meaning Courtois steps straight back in in 2024 when he is fit again, and there would be no transfer fee.
He’s Spanish so there would be no problems him integrating into the league he last played in when he was at Atletico Madrid in 2011. The only doubts will be over fan reaction to the club signing who has long since been seen as worthy of a place in the Spain squad and who was let go by Manchester United this summer.
Real Madrid goalkeeper Courtois (pictured) has suffered from a nasty ACL injury and is likely to be out for the rest of the season
David de Gea (pictured) would be happy to sign a one-year deal meaning Courtois can maintain his starting position when he returns
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Generally referred to as Bono the Morocco keeper is generally regarded as one of the best in La Liga where he won the award two seasons ago for the fewest goals conceded.
He has a 50m buy-out but Sevilla would probably sell for around 20m such is their financial situation. They have a ready made replacement in Marko Dmitrovic who shares number one spot with Bono. The set-back, apart from the need to pay a fee, is that he will likely miss all of January because of the African Nations Cup.
Yassine Bounou (pictured) has a £50m buy-out clause but will Sevilla would be willing to let him go for £20m
The Chelsea keeper almost signed for Real Madrid in 2018 but the deal was vetoed by then coach Zinedine Zidane who wanted to protect the popular Keylor Navas.
Chelsea signed him for 80m but if he is not going to be first choice next season and Madrid are willing to pay handsomely for a one-year loan then this would be a more favourable option in the eyes of the supporters than De Gea – they would be getting a current Spain international goalkeeper and not one from the past. They would have to negotiate with Chelsea though – Signing De Gea would be much quicker.
Kepa Arrizabalaga (pictured) almost signed for Real Madrid in 2018 but ended up at Chelsea instead
The Getafe stopper would not have to move house switching from Madrid region club to the side who wanted to sign him earlier this summer as back up for Courtois.
He would have cost 12 million euros (£10.3m) and the deal collapsed when it was clear Andriy Lunin was not going to move on. He was impressive for Getafe last season but is another like De Gea who is not currently an international keeper.
David Soria (pictured) is the cheapest option at £10.3m but isn’t currently an international keeper
And the rest… Keylor Navas, now aged 36, is still much-loved by Madrid fans and well down the pecking order at Paris Saint Germain. He is arguably further past his peak than De Gea though.
Unai Simon is Spain’s number one but the Athletic Bilbao keeper would be costly and what would they do with him next year when Courtois returns.
Portuguese keeper Rui Silva is another who has impressed. It wouldn’t take much to get him out of cash-strapped Betis. The club would accept under 10m because in Claudio Bravo they have another international keeper.
Much the same can be said for Giorgi Mamardashvili. He is quality and his club Valencia need the money.
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