Real lead Barca in Ruiz pursuit
Real Madrid are poised to beat Barcelona to the signing of Napoli’s highly-rated midfielder Fabian Ruiz.
Only one goal separates the two giants of Spanish football atop the La Liga standings, but Los Blancos are firmly in front when it comes to landing the 23-year-old.
The young Spain international has impressed in blue since joining Carlo Ancelotti’s side in the summer of 2018 from Real Betis, in a deal said to be worth 30 million euros.
Ruiz has become an established member of Gli Azzurri’s side this term, featuring nineteen times in all competitions, while he also notched his first goal for his country in November’s 5-0 demolition of Romania, as Spain cruised towards the Euro 2020 finals.
And, with a summer move away from Italy on the cards, Real are in pole position to pick up the former Betico. Los Merengues are keen to add the promising youngster to their midfield arsenal, as they look to return to the heights that saw them win three consecutive Champions Leagues between 2016 and 2018.
However, if the capital club are to bring Ruiz to the Bernabeu, they will have to fend off interest from the Premier League, as Manchester City and Liverpool also look to secure the Spaniard’s services.
Real and Barca are also said to be fighting it out over Metz defender Lenny Lacroix. The French club hold the sixteen-year-old in high regard and have wasted no time in throwing the France Under-17 international into first-team training.
As club legend Sergio Ramos nears the end of his career and rumours grow of an exit for France’s World Cup winner Samuel Umtiti, Real’s interest in Lacroix should come as little surprise.
But the youngster is turning heads across the continent. Bayern Munich have been tracking the centre-half’s progress, while both Juventus and Barcelona have submitted offers.