Real Madrid are reportedly ready to go head-to-head with Barcelona over the signing of Inter forward Lautaro Martinez this summer.
The two rivals are currently involved in a thrilling title race with just three points separating them, and so with 15 games to go, it’s a good time to get decent odds with William Hill to have the chance to win big.
The 22-year-old is having a fine season for the Nerazzurri this year, as he has bagged 16 goals and four assists in 28 appearances for Antonio Conte’s side.
That in turn has led them to top spot in the Serie A table after 23 games, while they remain in contention for the Coppa Italia and Europa League.
Martinez has been crucial to their push thus far, and he will no doubt continue to be so in the coming months while he already has nine goals in 17 caps for Argentina as he has the ability to become a world-class player.
According to ESPN, Real Madrid are now ready to face off with Barcelona off the pitch as well as in the La Liga title battle, as it’s noted that they also want Martinez this summer.
However, it would certainly require either side to dig deep into their pockets as it’s added that the Inter forward has a €111m release clause in his current contract with the Italian giants, and so it’s likely that they will not be interested in accepting anything less than that.
That said, given how important Martinez has been for Inter so far this season, it’s unlikely that they even want to entertain offers at all, but should Real Madrid and Barcelona come knocking, they may be forced to listen regardless.
It’s clear why both Spanish giants would want the move to happen though given their lack of quality depth up front.
Madrid need more than Karim Benzema moving forward and Luka Jovic has struggled to impress this season, while they have a number of youngsters who need that experience and quality next to them to help their development.
It’s a similar story for Barcelona who are currently facing an injury crisis up top, with both Luis Suarez and Ousmane Dembele sidelined due to injury after undergoing surgery in recent weeks.
Particularly with a lack of quality depth behind Suarez, signing a player like Martinez could give them a huge long-term boost, and so it remains to be seen firstly if he can be prised away from Inter, and who is successful in trying to do so.
Madrid’s efforts to raise funds for the swoop could be boosted by the fact that Isco is currently being linked with Chelsea and Arsenal, and so perhaps that could pave the way for a move for Lautaro.
The focus for now though switches back to the La Liga title race this weekend before a battle could ensue off the pitch this summer.