Real Madrid have got themselves in pole position in the race for Chelsea centre-back Antonio Rudiger, according to Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano.
Rudiger’s contract at Stamford Bridge is due to expire in June, and he is now likely to leave the Blues on a free transfer.
Manchester United, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain have been heavily linked with the Germany international, who has scored five goals and registered four assists in 47 appearances for the west Londoners this season.
However, Los Blancos are now leading the race, with the La Liga leaders are the ‘closest team to finding an agreement’.
Rudiger, 29, has been a key player for The Blues since Thomas Tuchel’s arrival as head coach, but the defender is not currently able to sign a new deal with the club due to the sanctions placed on owner Roman Abramovich.