It’s difficult not to feel sorry for Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas, as speculation linking the club with a swoop for a new shot-stopper never seems far away.
Since joining the Spanish giants in 2014, he’s gone on to make 108 appearances in all competitions, helping the club win a La Liga title, two Champions League trophies, the UEFA Super Cup twice and two FIFA Club World Cups.
Yet question marks still seemingly remain over his long-term future as the number one choice between the posts, with Marca noting that the David De Gea transfer saga has been ongoing for two years.
According to Don Balon, as re-reported by the Daily Star, Cristiano Ronaldo has now weighed in on the matter, and has reportedly identified an ideal long-term solution to replace his teammate as a criticism that can be levelled at Navas is that he isn’t the all-round modern-day goalkeeper needed at a European powerhouse such as Madrid.
However, it’s an ambitious one given that it’s Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen, who has firmly established himself as the top choice at the Nou Camp under Ernesto Valverde so far this season.
In turn, given that transfers between the two rivals are unlikely at the best of times, Barca are hardly going to be in a rush to hand over a fundamental player to Real. So regardless of what Ronaldo reportedly wants and with club president Florentino Perez said to be keen to replace Navas too, it would surely be a waste of time chasing ter Stegen next summer.
Navas turns 31 in December, and while Zinedine Zidane seemingly has no problem with the Costa Rican international, he’ll hope to continue to prove those doubting him wrong to hold on to his role beyond this season. Reports of a teammate wanting him replaced though will surely hurt.