Jules Kounde: A candidate to replace Sergio Ramos at Real Madrid



Posted Sunday, June 20, 2021 by Marca.com

Jules Kounde: A candidate to replace Sergio Ramos at Real Madrid

Sergio Ramos' departure from Real Madrid was an eventuality the club always knew they would have to deal with, although few thought it would be in the summer of 2021, yet Jules Kounde of Sevilla is seen as an option to replace the veteran.

Kounde has been linked with Manchester United as a result of his rise to prominence with Sevilla, although Los Blancos also recognise his defensive talents.

A buyout clause of 80 million euros may be seen as prohibitive by Florentino Perez, especially at a time of financial cost-cutting, but it's difficult to find a suitable replacement for Ramos within Los Merengues' limited budget.

Sevilla, the perfect stepping stone

Whilst many will point to the fact Ramos himself developed at Sevilla before his switch to the Spanish capital, the Sevilla of today isn't at all the same beast.

They are now a club seen as having legitimate European pedigree, and excelling whilst playing for Sevilla is more of a sign of elite-level readiness than when Ramos was signed for 27 million euros.

Under Julen Lopetegui, Kounde has emerged as the team's best defender. He has suitably partnered Diego Carlos and has shown a fine level of technical ability.

He isn't, yet, the leader that Ramos is at Real Madrid, and you worry about whether that's more of what Carlo Ancelotti will need.

Raphael Varane performs best when next to Ramos, while his partnership with Eder Militao has been a slow-starter.

David Alaba can be that veteran presence who would complement Kounde well, although it's unlikely Ancelotti will utilise a system with three central defenders.

Will it happen?

It's difficult to see Los Blancos spending that sort of money on a player this summer for reasons mentioned above, but, it's not impossible.

Varane's contract is set to expire in June 2022, and if he won't re-sign with Los Blancos then it may well be that Kounde is actually his replacement, rather than Ramos.

Without the influx of cash from a sale, Real Madrid won't buy Kounde this summer and Sevilla have shown no appetite at all to accept anything lower than the value of his buyout clause.

There is also the possibility that Kounde will be signed by another team this summer. Real Madrid would like to sign Kylian Mbappe on a free next summer but that will include a hefty signing-on-fee and salary.

Money being saved for that is important, and this may open up the door for Manchester United to bring Kounde in to solve their own defensive woes, especially with him having more years left at the top level than Varane.



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