Chelsea are prepared to let goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois leave Stamford Bridge for free instead of selling him this summer.
The Belgium international’s contract stand-off with Chelsea has put his future at the club in doubt with his deal expiring at the end of next season.
And according to The Sun, the Premier League champions are willing to let him run down his deal rather than cash in early.
Real Madrid are interested in the 25-year-old and have him on their three-man shortlist as a potential long-term successor to Keylor Navas at the Bernabeu.
Courtois has had experience of playing in Spain as well, spending three years on loan at their rivals Atletico Madrid, where he won the La Liga title in the 2013–14 season.
And returning to the Spanish capital as No 1 for Real is considered a dream move for most keepers.
Madrid are also eyeing Manchester United shotstopper David de Gea, who they have been an admirer of for some time.
United are aware De Gea could be tempted by a move back to his native Spain, but they have an option to extend his contract to 2020, so he effectively has two more seasons on his deal in the eyes of United’s top brass.
The Spain international was in sensational form on Saturday to thwart Arsenal time and again, making the joint-most saves ever in a Premier League game (14) in their 3-1 victory, leading to Jose Mourinho hailing him as the world’s best No 1.
But with De Gea effectively tied down at Old Trafford and Courtois’ contract stalemate set to continue, Madrid may be forced to look elsewhere.
They are also keeping tabs on Athletic Bilbao starlet Kepa Arrizabalaga.
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