Real Madrid: The 5 best U21 transfer targets for Los Blancos

Erling Haaland (Photo by Alex Gottschalk/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)
Erling Haaland (Photo by Alex Gottschalk/DeFodi Images via Getty Images) /
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Benoit Badiashile Mukinayi
Benoit Badiashile Mukinayi (Photo by Jeroen Meuwsen/BSR Agency/Getty Images) /

Monaco CB Benoit Badiashile

Real Madrid have mostly been linked to Jules Kounde and Dayot Upamecano at the center back position, but Benoit Badiashile is a name who has recently emerged on Los Blancos’ radar after a breakout 2019-2020 season for Monaco.

Zinedine Zidane has taken a liking to Badiashile, and it’s not difficult to see why. The player is only 19 years old, but he is already one of the best center backs in Ligue 1, though he seems to be flying under the radar.

Last season, the French defender completed about 85 percent of his passes with 1.7 interceptions per game. He was dribbled past fewer than 0.5 time sper game.

This season, Badiashile has upped his interceptions to 2.2, and his other defensive numbers remain strong. His aerial duels per game are up by 0.1 to 3.6, even as his dribbles allowed per game are also up by 0.1 to 0.6. There’s really no difference either way.

Badiashile has so much composure for a 19-year-old center back, and whenever you see a young player flourishing this much in a top five league at that position, you have to take notice. He is exactly the kind of player Real Madrid should keep an eye on, because he should be cheaper than Upamecano and Kounde. Fewer people know about him and he may not seem as impressive, but he is younger than both by a few years.

Real Madrid can afford to wait on a center back, since Sergio Ramos is still going strong next to the world-class Raphael Varane. Badiashile is a name to keep an eye on in 2021.