Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone appears to have told Real Madrid star Luka Modric to join him at the Wanda Metropolitano next season.
Modric, 38, has just four months left on his contract with Los Blancos, and this is his final campaign at the Santiago Bernabeu. The Croatian has enjoyed an illustrious career with Carlo Ancelotti’s side, making 514 appearances, and winning 23 major trophies as well as the Ballon d’Or.
However, the Croatia international has been handed a more withdrawn role by Ancelotti at Real Madrid this season. He’s become more of a bit-part player, starting 10 of 18 La Liga games.
Modric didn’t start Los Merengues’ 1-1 draw against Atletico in the Madrid derby on Sunday (February 4). He came on in the 76th minute but not before Simeone grabbed a quick word with him on the touchline.
DAZN claims that the Argentine coach urged the five-time UEFA Champions League winner to join Los Colchoneros. He allegedly said:
“Luka! Luka! Join us & come play with us!”
This wouldn’t be the first time a player has crossed over Madrid from either rival or played for both clubs. Los Blancos goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois previously played at the Wanda Metropolitano while the iconic Raul also turned out for both Madrid rivals.
Modric will become a free agent in the summer once his contract with Real Madrid expires. He’s been at the Bernabeu since August 2012 when he joined from Tottenham Hotspur in a €35 million deal.
Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti confirms Luka Modric is leaving
Ancelotti confirmed that this would be Modric’s final season at Real Madrid. The Italian tactician said (via Tribal Football):
“It’s very difficult to leave professionals on the bench who train well and work well, and more so players who have and are marking an era. We have to thank him for everything he has done here. On a professional level, I take the decision and that’s it.”
Los Blancos are spoilt for choice in midfield especially following Jude Bellingham’s arrival this past summer. The English superstar joined an already stacked midfield pool also consisting of Toni Kroos, Aurelien Tchouameni, Eduardo Camavinga, Federico Valverde, and Brahim Diaz.
Modric was linked with a departure last summer and received interest from the Saudi Pro League. Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano claimed that the Croat turned down ‘one of the biggest offers in football history’ before signing a one-year extension at Real Madrid.