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Haaland and Mbappe at Real Madrid? Zidane responds to renewed transfer talk

9:51 AM EDT 10/16/20
Erling Haaland Kylian Mbappe
The Blancos boss admits to being an admirer of those reportedly on his radar but is reluctant to be drawn on interest with no window open

Zinedine Zidane rates Erling Haaland as “good” but is reluctant to be drawn on Real Madrid’s reported interest in the Borussia Dortmund striker and Paris Saint-Germain star Kylian Mbappe.

Real are said to be in the process of identifying top targets for 2021. Those at Santiago Bernabeu have had to rein their ambition in during recent windows, with the financial implications of coronavirus leading even the richest of clubs to tighten their belts.

Real are, however, expected to revert back to their ‘Galacticos’ recruitment philosophy at the earliest opportunity.

Norwegian frontman Haaland would fit that bill, despite being just 20, and Madrid have been monitoring his progress for some time.

Zidane, though, is giving little away with it comes to transfer plans, saying of the Dortmund starlet: “Haaland is not my player, but he is good. What can I say?”

While remaining coy on one highly-rated frontman, the same stance is being adopted when it comes to Mbappe.

Real made efforts to snap up the World Cup winner when he left Monaco for PSG and have retained that interest through the years since.

Mbappe has suggested that he would be open to making a move to Spain at some point, with the 21-year-old admitting to being a big admirer of Blancos icons Cristiano Ronaldo and Luka Modric, but Zidane says there is too much reading between the lines going on.

The Frenchman said of comments from a fellow countryman that have been taken as a transfer hint: “No, this has always happened. There are always a lot of rumours and I am not just talking about Mbappe. It will not affect our group, but as you know it is over because the market has closed and we have this group to fight until the end.”

After distancing himself from two potential striking additions, Zidane has also sought to clear the air when it comes to a goalscorer already on his books.

Luka Jovic has struggled since making a big-money move to Madrid in 2019, with it suggested that he could have been sent on loan over the summer.

Zidane insists it was always his intention to retain the services of the 22-year-old Serbian that he personally requested to be snapped up.

He said: “I have asked for Jovic, then everyone can have an opinion. Talking nonsense is complicated. It's not like that, but it's okay.”