James Rodriguez: Real Madrid's interest in Colombian could trigger Luis Suarez move

Rodriguez has admitted he would prefer a move to Madrid but any move would require a possible record bid, and could lead to a number of other big transfers

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The Independent Football

James Rodriguez could return to Europe to find himself the most important figure in the summer transfer window after taking the World Cup by storm.

The attacking midfielder had already impressed in Brazil after becoming the first Colombian to score in each of their World Cup group matches, but his contender for goal of the World Cup against Uruguay launched him on to another level – and gained the interest of the biggest club’s in Europe.

After admitting that he would be fulfilling a “dream” with a move to Spain, talk has intensified of a potentially record-breaking transfer to Real Madrid, and Rodriguez himself admitted that he would prefer a move to the Spanish capital over Barcelona should anything materialise this summer.

“It would be a dream to play in Spain, one of the best leagues in the world,” Rodriguez told Cadena Cope. When pushed further over which club he would prefer to join, Rodriguez answered: “I prefer Madrid.”


Having only joined Monaco last summer for 45m euros, the Ligue 1 club have made it clear that the only way Rodriguez could leave the Stade Louis II stadium is if a club offers a fee in the region of Real’s transfer of Gareth Bale.

That would mean Real would need to shell out over £80m on a single player for the third time in five years following the acquisitions of Cristiano Ronaldo in 2009 and Bale last summer. Should they do so, the move could prompt fierce rivals Barcelona in to making a major signing of their own, and with interest in Liverpool’s Luis Suarez increasing by the day, Rodriguez could trigger a rush of transfers as clubs look to balance the books with Financial Fair Play in mind as well as manage their squads.

Video: Colombia fans celebrate Uruguay win

The news comes after the Telegraph revealed both Manchester United and Tottenham missed out on the chance to sign Rodriguez before he joined Monaco. Sir Alex Ferguson decided against making a move for the 22-year-old in 2012 as he felt Porto’s asking price was too high, with a reported £25m bid turned down by the Portuguese club.

And former Spurs manager Andre Villas-Boas identified Rodriguez as one of his preferred targets last summer as they reinvested the £86m from the sale of Bale. A move for the attacking midfielder failed to materialise though, and Spurs ended up with Nacer Chadli and Erik Lamela instead.

Suarez looks to be inching closer to a move to Barcelona

Both Liverpool and Arsenal will also be monitoring Rodriguez’s future once his duties in Brazil come to an end. While they are not interested in signing the Colombian star, a move to Real could open the door for the Gunners to capture either Karim Benzema or Alvaro Morata, while Liverpool could reinvest money from selling Suarez in to landing transfer targets Adam Lallana, Lazar Markovic and Divock Origi, who is closing in on a £9.8m move to Anfield.

Liverpool are also believed to be interested in including Barcelona midfielders Pedro and Alexis Sanchez as part of any sale of Suarez, which could see the Catalans offer a cash-plus-player deal to land the controversial Uruguayan.