In-demand defender could make La Liga move.
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Real Madrid are hoping to jump ahead of the likes of Chelsea and Manchester City in the race to sign in-demand Roma defender Mehdi Benatia, according to Fichajes.com.
The Moroccan international is widely regarded as one of the best defensive players in Serie A at the moment, having enjoyed a superb first season with Roma last year, helping them to the best defensive record in the Italian top flight.
Benatia had previously impressed at his old club Udinese, but he may now be set to leave for a move abroad after attracting strong interest from a number of Europe’s top clubs, with Madrid now thought to be stepping up their efforts to sign him.
Manager Carlo Ancelotti is seemingly ready to offload Portuguese centre-back Pepe, and would ideally like Benatia to come in as his replacement, with the Champions League winners looking to make some changes at the back to improve their chances of winning La Liga this season.
Chelsea, City and Bayern Munich remain in the running to land the 27-year-old, but Real are known for being able to beat their rivals to the signings of big-name players with a great deal of financial backing behind them.