Could Real Madrid use Isco to acquire the best available center back?

Real Madrid, Isco, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Real Madrid, Isco, Zinedine Zidane (Photo by Diego Souto/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid seem to have David Alaba lined up as Sergio Ramos’ replacement, but nothing is guaranteed with regards to the futures of either experienced defender. Furthermore, with Raphael Varane’s future now in question, Los Blancos may be adding “center back” to “forward” at the top of their summer 2021 transfer window wishlist.

A goal-scoring forward is undoubtedly a top priority, but if the right opportunity is available, Florentino Perez may be interested in pouncing on a young center back. And there is no better talent than Jules Kounde, who recently showed the extent of his stardom with a goal and a goal-saving tackle on Frenkie de Jong in the Copa del Rey fixture against Barcelona.

According to a report from Defensa Central, Real Madrid are interested in completing a swap deal with Sevilla involving Isco.

They would want to trade Isco straight-up for Sevilla’s most prized player, which is, of course, the center back Kounde. He has been on Real’s radar ever since his breakout 2019-2020 campaign.

Real Madrid swapping Isco for Jules Kounde seems highly unlikely

If the idea of trading Isco directly for Kounde sounds too good to be true to you, then I am absolutely with you there. Isco is a talented player, but he hasn’t been an actual star for years. Kounde is already one of the top five center backs in La Liga at the age of 22, and his composure and ball-playing ability are light years ahead of the other players linked to Los Blancos.

Kounde would cost a lot. Sevilla know how valuable he is and are not under pressure to sell him. Julen Lopetegui may be high on Isco and may want to use him, but Sevilla have more depth in the attack than they do in defense. They have Suso, Papu Gomez, and Joan Jordan running the show right now. But in defense, it is just Kounde and the older Diego Carlos.

Real must lower their expectations when it comes to what they can fetch for Isco, especially since he has not been in good form in almost a year. Isco can be a valuable player for someone – much like former Real attacking midfielder James Rodriguez has been for Everton – but he is clearly not in the same valuation ballpark as an ascending star center back like Kounde.

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Sevilla have been linked to Isco before, so let’s see if smoke rises in the summer transfer window. For now, Isco’s situation is cloudy until teams can see a little more of him on the pitch.