Real Madrid: Why Pau Torres is not worth the price tag

Villarreal, Pau Torres (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)
Villarreal, Pau Torres (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images) /

Real Madrid fans are carefully monitoring the team’s situation at center back. Currently, they have four quality players at the position in captain Sergio Ramos, Raphael Varane, Nacho Fernandez, and youngster Eder Militao. All four of these players are capable of starting, with Ramos and Varane standing out as two of the best in the world.

But Real are in an uncertain situation with their top starters. Ramos is on an expiring contract, and while he is expected to stay, there are no guarantees for Madridistas. The same can be said for Varane, though there is more time with him as his contract would run out at the end of the 2021-2022 season.

Even so, there have been rumors about Varane’s possible departure, with Manchester United reportedly hot on the French star’s heels. And that means Real Madrid have to keep a close eye on possible replacements.

One popular name within the confines of La Liga is Villarreal’s Pau Torres. The young Spanish international is having a quality season for the Yellow Submarine, and he could be a starting-caliber player for a club like Los Merengues.

Pau Torres could cost Real Madrid the full 65 million euros’s Mario Cortegana reported last month that Real Madrid have interest in Torres, but they would have to pay his 65 million euro release clause in order to pry him away from Villarreal. That is a similar situation to another young La Liga target in Jules Kounde, who is prized by Madrid but has an (even higher) release clause that would need to be activated of 80-90 million euros.

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A 65 million euro fee for Torres is not worth it. Realistically, if Real Madrid were forced to sell Varane this summer, they would not get nine figures in return during this economic crisis. They would probably get something in between Torres’ release clause and Kounde’s release clause, meaning they could only finance a Torres move.

Basically, Real Madrid would be trading Varane for Torres. That sounds like a downgrade and a bad deal, right? I mean, it’s not actually a trade, but if Torres’ going rate is as high as Varane’s, that’s still not the best of financial moves for Los Blancos.

Because a couple of years ago, Real paid 50 million euros for Eder Militao, who had a more impressive resume coming out of FC Porto than Torres does at Villarreal. It’s not that Torres isn’t a good center back. He is! But Militao is younger than Torres, has been with Real Madrid for a couple of years, and is at least as good as the Spanish international.

So why not pocket the money and stick with Militao? It’s unlikely Los Merengues will lose both Ramos and Varane this year, and Nacho is having an exceptional season as the third-choice center back. At worst, Real will have one standout veteran starter, Nacho, and Militao. Do they really need to splurge 65 million euros on Torres?

I would say no. And if they do want to sign a young center back, there are cheaper alternatives who are younger and have more upside. Primarily, Monaco’s Benoit Badiashile. He could realistically cost around half of Torres’ release clause, and he is a very talented 19-year-old.

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Torres is a player for Madridistas to watch this summer transfer window if a need at center back emerges, but unless Villarreal take a lower fee, he probably isn’t the most ideal transfer target for Los Blancos.