Real Madrid have officially announced the signing of Belgian goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois from Chelsea for reported €35m.
It’s official. Thibaut Courtois will wear the Real Madrid shirt next season following the completion of his move from Chelsea, bringing an end to one of the most drawn-out transfer sagas of this summer’s window.
From David De Gea to Alisson and Kepa there have been plenty of rumours surrounding the Real Madrid No.1 spot, but Florentino Perez has got his wish and signed the 26-year-old, who was named the best goalkeeper at the World Cup in Russia.
The European champions have been interested in the Belgian for some time now and the goalkeeper himself has never been shy in admitting his interest in returning to Spain.
“Back to Madrid? My children are very important to me, I’ve always said that, and they live there,” he acknowledged at the beginning of July.
Julen Lopetegui will be undoubtedly pleased to have one of the world’s best between his posts, but the signing does present him with a new headache too.
Real Madrid now have four goalkeepers for three places, meaning one will have to be moved on.
The most immediate problem presented is with Keylor Navas who, despite having his critics, has been the goalkeeper for Los Blancos in their last three Champions League successes.
Zinedine Zidane always defended him as his No.1, and the plan was for him to remain as such for next season.
Kiko Casilla will also be impacted.
If Keylor remained as first choice he was happy to stay and compete but with Courtois’ arrival he is now third choice, meaning he could seek an exit to find minutes elsewhere.
New arrival Andriy Lunin is the third.
At 19 he has just landed at an elite club and he may be loaned to another club to find minutes to aid his development.
The fact is one player will have to leave with Courtois arriving.