Vinicius Junior and other Real Madrid youngsters who could star this coming season

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Hot prospect: Vinicius Junior.

Despite losing Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus this summer, Real Madrid have decided against splurging big in the transfer market.

Instead, new manager Julen Lopetegui seems content on getting the most out of the talented group of players at his disposal. That however, isn’t limited to last season’s first team squad.

There are several young stars at the club eagerly awaiting their opportunities to shine and with many of them included in the club’s pre-season tour Stateside, here’s a look at a few who will be looking to earn plenty of minutes this coming season.

Fede Valverde

At 20, Fede Valverde is a promising midfielder who was included in Uruguay’s preliminary squad for the World Cup but didn’t make the final 23. The former Penarol player starred at the U-20 World Cup last year though as he won the Silver Ball and played his part in their fourth-placed finish.

He enjoyed a decent season on loan at Deportivo La Coruna last term and is ready to take the next step. One of Valverde’s best attributes is his versatility as he is capable of playing anywhere across the midfield or as a supporting striker while he has also featured in defence.

Federico Valverde.

Federico Valverde is likely to get further opportunities.

Martin Odegaard

The fledgling career of the “Norwegian Messi” has so far not gone according to plan. Martin Odegaard was the most sought after teenager in Europe back in 2015 before choosing to sign for Madrid as a 16-year-old. He even made his debut for the first team that year, replacing Ronaldo in the last league game of the season – a substitution that was presumably meant to be indicative of the youngster’s future at the club.

However, he didn’t progress as hoped and was then sent on loan to Heerenveen for the next two seasons. Having been included in the pre-season squad, the 19-year-old will be hoping to finally make his mark and remain at the Bernabeu this season.

Martin Odegaard

Plenty of talent but yet to deliver: Martin Odegaard.

Vinicius Junior

Madrid may have failed in their efforts to lure Neymar to the Bernabeu this summer but in Vinicius Junior they have a dazzling albeit raw talent in a similar mould. No one is expecting the 18-year-old to emulate the Brazilian superstar he looks up to but early impressions from within the Madrid camp suggests he’s already made quite the impact in training.

Several clips of Vinicius’ pace and quick feet during practice sessions have been doing the rounds on social media. He will certainly get his chance to shine on the US tour and should he grab it with both hands, Lopetegui may be tempted to use him, sporadically at least, during the upcoming season.

Borja Mayoral

Madrid are yet to sign a striker in this transfer window and Karim Benzema’s future isn’t entirely certain either.

That means Borja Mayoral may well get the opportunity to build on his 29 appearances for the first team, 24 of which came last season and produced seven goals. The 21-year-old has proved himself as a capable but inexperienced option from the bench.

Borja Mayoral.

Ready to make a more telling impact? Borja Mayoral.

Jesus Vallejo

Much is expected of Jesus Vallejo who, at just 21, has already had two back-to-back season-long loan spells at Real Zaragoza followed by another year away with Eintracht Frankfurt in the Bundesliga. He was given his opportunity with Los Blancos last season though and impressed in his 12 appearances.

With no new centre-backs arriving at the Bernabeu this summer, the young Spaniard looks destined for more action after featuring in the knockout stages of the team’s Champions League success last term.

Jesus Vallejo (C)

Promising centre-back: Jesus Vallejo (C).

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Live Real Madrid Blog: Spurs boss admits it's 'not realistic' to engineer Gareth Bale return

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It’s Stuart Appleby here and welcome to our latest Real Madrid blog as we keep you up to date on all the latest news from the Santiago Bernabeu on Sunday.

Follow our updates below…

9:00pm – Spurs cannot break Bale’s Bernabeu bonds

Bale with his winner's medal

Hopes about Real Madrid superstar Gareth Bale making a stunning switch back to Tottenham are “not realistic”, according to manager Mauricio Pochettino.

Read the quotes here.

7:40pm – No worries for Navas

Keylor Navas 1

No1: Keylor Navas.

Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas is “calm” about his future, despite repeat links to Belgium’s Thibaut Courtois.

Read the details here.

5:45pm – Madrid legend could join pack of Wolves

Experienced defender: Pepe is 35.

Experienced defender: Pepe is 35.

Wolves are set to make a surprise move for Real Madrid legend Pepe, who currently plies his trade with Besiktas in Turkey.

According to Fanatik, the 35-year-old centre-back could be in line for a Premier League switch with the newly-promoted club rumoured to be willing to meet his €7 million valuation.

Read all the details here.

4:22pm – Lewandowski still wants Bernabeu switch

Robert Lewandowski 4

Robert Lewandowski has not given up hope of landing a dream move to Real Madrid this summer, Marca reports.

Read more, here.

2:45pm – Dani Ceballos set for big future at Real Madrid?

_Dani Ceballos

Dani Ceballos endured a miserable first season at Real Madrid under Zinedine Zidane – but Julen Lopetegui is prepared to get the polish out for the midfield diamond in the rough.

Chris Bailey looks at three players who could well be on the cusp of bigger things under Lopetegui, as Madrid’s pre-season tour gets under way.

12:45pm – Strong Whites squad travels stateside

Real Madrid have no shortage of options to choose from for their upcoming International Champions Cup matches as Julen Lopetegui has 32 players at his disposal.

Check out the full squad which made the trip below (via realmadrid.com):

Real Madrid squad

Goalkeepers: Navas, Casilla, Luca and Lunin.

Defenders: Carvajal, Vallejo, Ramos, Nacho, Theo, Odriozola, Reguilon, Quezada, Sergio Lopez, Javi Sanchez, De la fuente and Leon.

Midfielders: Kroos, Llorente, Asensio, Isco, Ceballos, Odegaard, Valverde, Seoane, Oscar and Feuillassier.

Forwards: Benzema, Bale, Lucas Vazquez, Mayoral, De Tomas and Vinicius.

11:30am – Left-back linked with loan exit

Hernandez was part of the club's Champions League winning side last term.

Hernandez was part of the club’s Champions League winning side last term.

Real Madrid defender Theo Hernandez is on the verge of completing a loan move to Real Sociedad, AS reports.

Read more, here.

10:15am – Los Blancos touch down stateside

Real Madrid have arrived stateside as Los Blancos ramp up their pre-season preparations.

Julen Lopetegui’s men touched down in the US on Saturday night, arriving to the cheers of thousands of fans in Miami.

Read more, here.

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Keylor Navas remains 'calm' amid Real Madrid chase for Chelsea keeper Thibaut Courtois

David Cooper 29/07/2018
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Keylor Navas has won three Champions League titles with Los Blancos.

Real Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas is “calm” about his future, despite repeat links to Belgium’s Thibaut Courtois.

Navas, 31, has been forced to deal with repeat links to the likes of Manchester United’s David De Gea since he joined from Levante in 2014.

Courtois is now the latest name in the frame to usurp him. The 26-year-old has declined to renew his deal at Stamford Bridge, amid reports the ex-Atletico Madrid loanee wants to be closer to his children in the Spanish capital.

However, Navas is not worried after speaking to new head coach Julen Lopetegui.

“I already spoke with him [Lopetegui],” Navas told La Nacion. “Everything is fine, everything is fine, no worries.

“I am calm. The truth is I have two years left on my contract, in which I have to spend my energies and my mind is thinking how to improve day by day with the effort that I have to show.

“I enjoy every moment, we must see what will happen in the future. Then I must not stop enjoying [life].

“I’m calm and I’m fine there [in Madrid]. I have always said, every year, that I can be there, because I will be very happy.

“I’m happy, really grateful to God because there are very nice opportunities. I go with all the dreams of the world, like when I first moved there.

“I will work hard and strive every day to keep enjoying what it is to be in Madrid.”

Navas has played 141 matches for Madrid, winning 10 trophies.

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