After former academy product, Raul de Tomas, made comments about expressing interest in returning to Real Madrid, rumors have already started circulating about his possible return to the club. Having come through the ranks at La Fábrica (Real Madrid’s academy), he enjoyed some good loan spells at Valladolid and Rayo Vallecano; helping the latter achieve promotion in the 2017/2018 season.
Despite a bad spell in Portugal with SL Benfica and being a part of the RCD Espanyol side that was relegated, R.D.T. was fundamental in the “Parakeets” return to the top league the very next season as he lead the team in goals, which saw him claim the top scorer award. This season, he has arguably been the team’s best player helping the side stave off relegation, and sits only behind Karim Benzema in the race for the Pichichi award. Regardless, it seems as if he will be leaving RCD Espanyol after the conclusion of the season with several important clubs already expressing interest in him.
While it is uncertain whether Real Madrid will actually pursue R.D.T. or not, should the club make an effort in signing him, and would he actually make the team better? Here are the pros and cons of signing Raul de Tomas.
- Fits an Important Need
While it might not be Real Madrid’s most important need, the club desperately needs to find a reliable backup for Karim Benzema. The lack of depth at the striker position has been seriously affecting the squad and it is well known that the team struggles whenever Benzema does not play. Raul de Tomas is also a natural striker, which means he would provide the team with something they have not had since Alvaro Morata or even Gonzalo Higuain was on the team. He would be a constant aerial threat on crosses and set plays, and would also be vital when teams are defensively hard to break down as his presence would distract defenders, which would create spaces for the wingers to take advantage.
- Goals off the Bench
Along with adding depth, Raul de Tomas would be a goal-scoring option who could be fundamental in important situations. Despite achieving multiple league titles in the past few seasons, squad depth has been a constant struggle in various positions, including at striker. The team has not had a reliable backup striker or even multiple goal-scoring options coming off the bench since the 2016/2017 season, which saw players like Morata, Asensio, James, and even Isco scoring vital goals in clutch moments. If R.D.T. is given important playing time and used properly, he could become a crucial asset in helping the team pick up important points in moments when oppositions are defensively hard to break down.
- Maturity and Desire to Play for Real Madrid
As previously mentioned, R.D.T. has expressed his desire on multiple occasions to play for Real Madrid. Interestingly, in Real Madrid’s defeat of RCD Espanyol, which saw them claim the league title, Raul de Tomas received an ovation from the fans when he was substituted.
Additionally, he seems to have matured greatly since leaving the academy where he was known for being a difficult character. However, his playing journey has probably made him realize the errors of his ways and helped him become a truly better professional. Something that is important because if he signs for Real Madrid, he will be Karim Benzema’s backup and would not be the main figure of the team as he is with RCD Espanyol, which is not always easy to accept.
- Would not be Cheap
Although Real Madrid and RCD Espanyol have an outstanding connection, the “Parakeets” will surely not want to let their best player leave without getting a certain amount in return. Reports have indicated that Espanyol would like €35 million for Raul de Tomas. Even if Real Madrid can sign him at a reduced price, they would still need to pay a high amount for a player who might be reliable, but will usually be a backup. Furthermore, there are other positions on the team that also need to be taken care of. With that in mind, is it worth paying that much for a backup striker when there are other vital positions that need to be strengthened?
- Other Clubs Have Expressed Interest
His outstanding campaign has attracted interest from other important clubs, especially from the Premier League. It has been reported that Arsenal are keen on signing him, which would pose a significant threat to Real Madrid. Not just would he play regularly at Arsenal with Lacazette leaving after this season, R.D.T. would make substantially more than he would at Real Madrid. If that happens, then it would be down to Raul de Tomas to decide whether he wants to be a backup at Real Madrid or try his luck in the Premier League.
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- Difficult Character
Although he surely has evolved, he use to be known for being a difficult character and there are still some alarms about whether he would be able to accept the role of being a backup. In fact, after being substituted against Real Madrid, his behavior on the bench led to his manager grabbing and yelling at him. It is important to know whether he would be comfortable playing as a backup. If he signs believing he can accept this role and finds it much more difficult than he originally thought, then he could potentially cause issues within the team.