Real Madrid are reportedly set to go head-to-head with rivals Barcelona over the signing of Napoli midfielder Fabian Ruiz.
The two Spanish giants are currently battling it out for the La Liga title and remain in the hunt for the Champions League, but their rivalry is seemingly set to go beyond the pitch.
According to Calciomercato, Real Madrid are preparing to make a move for the Spanish midfielder, which in turn will see them try to fend off Barcelona and convince him to make the move to the Bernabeu instead.
It’s added that Zinedine Zidane has given his approval to move forward with the pursuit, as he perhaps hopes to see his midfield reinforced this summer.
Speculation is seemingly building too as La Gazzetta dello Sport reported less than 24 hours ago that Real Madrid could be preparing a €70m bid to prise him away from Naples, but it remains to be seen whether or not it’s enough to convince them to green light an exit.
One thing that is certain at this stage, is that the classy 23-year-old would be a top signing for either Real Madrid or Barcelona, as they will likely already be aware of from his days at Real Betis.
Although he’s only managed three goals and two assists in 32 appearances so far this season, it’s his overall influence on games with his technical quality, ability to dictate and dominate possession as part of a midfield collective and his work ethic which sets him apart.
Particularly considering the style of play that both Madrid and Barca adopt, it’s arguably easy to see him fitting in and playing a key role.
Time will tell if he can firstly be prised away from Napoli, and whether it will be Real Madrid or their bitter rivals Barcelona who land his signature. With a bid touted from the capital club, perhaps that puts them ahead in the battle for now.