Real Madrid Eye Bellingham’s Acquaintance as Potential Mbappe Backup

Real Madrid want to reunite Jude Bellingham with Youssoufa Moukoko if they can’t snare Kylian Mbappe from Paris Saint-Germain, according to reports in Spain.

Real have long been linked with a move for Mbappe, and PSG left him out of their pre-season tour of Japan and South Korea in the belief their star player had already agreed a pre-contract with the record European champions.

But the ice has since thawed between Mbappe and his current employers, and after hitting eight goals in five games on his return to the squad, there is increasing optimism that he might extend his stay in the French capital after all.

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With Erling Haaland under lock and key at Manchester City, and Real having already spent €103 million on Bellingham, Real might need to cast their net further for cheaper alternatives to inherit Karim Benzema’s No.9 position.

— Football Transfers (@Transfersdotcom) March 3, 2023

Moukoko a perfect fit

“Carlo Ancelotti likes Moukoko, an old friend of Bellingham’s, and he could fit Real Madrid’s project for an affordable price,” reports Defensa Central’s Elia Mena. “The 18-year-old’s friendship with Bellingham, and Florentino Perez’s with Han-Joachim Watzke, could be key.”

Perez and his opposite number Watzke have done significant business in recent seasons, with Bellingham’s transfer from Dortmund preceded by Achraf Hakimi’s loan the other way in 2018. Reinier also made a similar move two years later.

READ: Bellingham matches ANOTHER Ronaldo record after hot Real Madrid start

A move could make sense for all parties. Bellingham has become Real’s main goalscoring threat this season despite being a midfielder by trade, with former Stoke man Joselu the only recognised central striker in the first-team squad.

Moukoko find himself in a curious position at Dortmund, meanwhile: a full Germany international, but one who finds himself behind Sebastien Haller and Niklas Fullkrug in the pecking order of centre-forwards at the Signal Iduna Park.

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