Due to a calamitous season in which Real Madrid have failed to compete for the La Liga title or the Champions League, Zinedine Zidane was reinstated as Los Blancos manager in March.
It is understood that the three-time Champions League winning manager returned to the Santiago Bernabeu with a number of special requests, including having a big say in which players are brought in during the summer transfer window. Reports suggest that one of the Frenchman’s primary targets is Napoli winger Lorenzo Insigne.
Insigne is one of the few old school, one-club players left in elite football. The Italian is the captain of Napoli, the club he has played at since 2006 at the age of 15. He joined the academy of the Serie A club after starting out at Olimpia Sant’Arpino, and made the first team in 2010. Since then, Insigne has earned the nickname Lorenzo Il Magnifico, and has made 229 league appearances for the club scoring 57 goals in the process.
With Insigne being such a loyal, well-loved player, it will take a lucrative offer to tempt him to move away from the Stadio San Paolo to the Spanish top flight. But the talented forward has grown somewhat frustrated at Napoli’s inability to challenge Juventus at the top of the table. The Old Lady have won each of the last nine seasons, and are odds-on at 1/20,000 in the football betting to claim another title this time out. Napoli are once again the closest challengers, but were an astonishing 20 points behind the leaders after 31 games played. Insigne has already expressed his dismay at the Blues’ failure to compete, and may be tempted to move away for the chance to win silverware.
Zidane has a massive rebuilding job to do at Real, and this summer could see massive changes in the starting line-up. A brand new attack is on the cards, and Insigne would make a fine addition. The 27-year-old’s preferred position is on the left of a front three, but the versatile forward has shown that he is able to play in a number of different roles.
If Zidane was to land one of his other main targets, Eden Hazard, Insigne would most likely be used on the right-hand flank. The sound of the Belgian and the Italian lined up on either side of a striker is a tantalising prospect. Especially when that striker may well be Kylian Mbappe, who Real have expressed a huge interest in of late. The Frenchman had notched 27 goals and made six assists after 25 Ligue 1 starts, and has made a name for himself as the hottest young talent in the world.
Being a loyal player is all well and good, but when he retires Insigne will want to leave a legacy behind. Moving to Real Madrid and fighting for the chance to win major silverware could be the best move he ever makes.