Five players who could replace Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid

Cristiano Ronaldo has agreed a move to Italian giants Juventus from European champions Real Madrid.

The 33-year-old Portugal striker has played at the Bernabeu since 2009 when he moved from Manchester United for a then record-breaking £80million fee.

Ronaldo scored 44 goals in 44 games last season, also managing eight assists, and scored four goals for Portugal at the World Cup in Russia – including a hat-trick against Spain.

Here, FP looks at possible replacements for Real Madrid following Ronaldo’s departure.

Kylian Mbappe

Russia Soccer WCup France
France’s Kylian Mbappe has impressed in Russia (David Vincent/AP)

The French teenager is likely to be one of Madrid’s top targets. Mbappe joined Paris St Germain on loan from Monaco in August last year for £162million, which was paid when his move became permanent this summer. The 19-year-old scored 33 goals in 48 games for the French champions last season and became the first teenager to score a brace in a World Cup game since Pele in 1958. His performances at the World Cup have drawn comparisons with Thierry Henry and Michael Owen.

Eden Hazard

Eden Hazard File Photo
Eden Hazard could be tempted by a side that can offer European football (John Walton/PA)

The Belgium and Chelsea forward has impressed at the World Cup, scoring two goals and providing two assists so far. The 27-year-old might not be a direct replacement for the prolific Ronaldo, having scored 17 goals for the Blues last season, but he provided more assists than the Portuguese, with 13. He has also been given the Belgian captaincy in a show of confidence from coach Roberto Martinez. Hazard could find the lure of Champions League football too great, with Chelsea missing out after finishing fifth last season.


Brazil v Croatia – International Friendly – Anfield
Brazil’s Neymar would be a big signing (Nick Potts/PA)

The most expensive footballer in the world, who moved from Barcelona to Paris St Germain for a record £199.8million, could be a target for his ability on the pitch and his appeal off it. Neymar, 26, scored 28 goals in 30 appearances in his first season in France and provided 16 assists. The Brazilian, who scored two goals for his country at this summer’s World Cup, was linked with Madrid in January but played down speculation, claiming he was happy at the French club.

Antoine Griezmann

Marseille v Atletico Madrid – UEFA Europa League – Final – Parc Olympique Lyonnais
Could Antoine Griezmann be tempted to a cross-city switch? (Nick Potts/PA)

Despite announcing he would stay at Atletico Madrid on a television documentary called ‘La Decision’, the French striker could yet be targeted by Real Madrid. Griezmann, who has previously been linked with a move to Barcelona, scored 29 goals in 49 appearances for Atletico last season and also provided 15 assists. The 27-year-old forward had scored three goals for France at Russia 2018 prior to the semi-final but two of those were from the penalty spot in a quiet tournament by his standards.

Robert Lewandowski

2018 World Cup Package
Robert Lewandowski currently plays club football in Germany (Nick Potts/PA)

Lewandowski set a European record of 16 goals in a single World Cup qualifying campaign ahead of the tournament in Russia, and scored in nine out of Poland’s 10 games. The 29-year-old is renowned for his goalscoring prowess and has won the Bundesliga golden boot three times since 2013. He has scored 30 goals in the league on two occasions since his arrival in Germany in 2010. Lewandowski has played for Bayern Munich since 2014 after moving on a free transfer from rivals Borussia Dortmund and has scored 151 goals in 195 appearances over four seasons.

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Football Paradise Staff Reporter

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