While the Jose Mourinho return issue bubbles on, Florentino Perez is also looking at the current squad. Bad results have worried him this season and the Real Madrid president has reached the conclusion that the team needs an urgent remodelling at the end of the season.
The Madrid chief is disappointed that the players seem to have lost competitive hunger. The specific nature of the changes may depend on if Mourinho arrives or if Santiago Solari stays. In secret negotiations that have been going on with Mourinho since last October, one of the key discussion points is the need to revamp everything.
Madrid have drawn up a long list of ins and outs they are planning. Out? Veterans like Luka Modric, stars that have lost their sheen like Isco and Marco Asensio, players who have lost their place, like Keylor Navas, or the spoiled children of Perez - Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema.
Even Sergio Ramos and Marcelo could leave. Neither has good ‘feeling’ with the Portuguese and the coach would be unlikely to want to work with them.
Isco is acting out and while Navas has stayed disciplined, he also wants to leave. However if Mourinho comes, he may not want to work with Thibaut Courtois again so the Costa Rican may be given reprieve. Kiko Casilla and Luca Zidane also have no future at the club.
Jesus Vallejo and Mariano Diaz have had no game time and may also want a change of scene.
Benzema’s situation could depend on Mourinho. The coach ended up picking him over Gonzalo Higuain before when at the club.
Ex-Tottenham duo Bale and Modric are also in a doubtful situation. Modric tried to go to Inter Milan in the summer but although it didn’t happen, he may leave next summer. The midfielder has one more year on his contract. He wants a new one but at 33 - and not playing particularly well - Perez may not grant him one.
Bale, meanwhile, has great moments, like against Liverpool in the Champions League final or Kashima Antlers just now in the Club World Cup, but is not consistent and can easily turn mediocre for a few weeks. Perez wants a new talismanic leader of the team and Neymar and Mbappe are leading the list.