Harry Kane and Mauro Icardi lined up as Karim Benzema replacements by Real Madrid

David Cooper - Writer 13:46 22/11/2018
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Tottenham star Harry Kane and Inter Milan ace Mauro Icardi are being lined up as replacements for Karim Benzema by Real Madrid.

Real – who have handed Santiago Solari the reins following Julen Lopetegui’s dismissal – are expected to bolster their ranks in the New Year, after failing to invest much during the summer following Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure to Juventus.

And the Portuguese’s defection has had an impact, with Los Blancos enduring a torrid start to the 2018/19 season – they are currently sixth in La Liga, having lost already four times in 12 games.

Despite their woes, Benzema is firing on all cylinders, bagging 10 goals this term, having only found the net 12 times in total a year ago.

A priority for club chiefs is a long-term heir for the 30-year-old.

According to Spanish news outlet OK Diario, Kane and Icardi are at the top of Real’s shortlist.

Target man: Harry Kane.

Target man: Harry Kane.

Icardi has been a standout performer in Serie A so far. The Argentina international has bagged 117 goals in 195 games for the Nerazzurri.

However, with the Italian giants no longer a serious force in the top tier, the 25-year-old might be tempted by a new challenge.

Icardi finally broke his international duck earlier this week as Argentina beat Mexico 2-0.

“The goal was something I was missing,” he said. “Luckily, it came through.

“I’m happy also. Excited. I was waiting for it. We talked about it a lot. For a forward, not scoring goals is an ugly thing. I hope I can continue like this.”

Kane, meanwhile, has established himself as one of the deadliest strikers in Europe at Spurs.

Last term he bagged 41 goals and has already notched 10 this time round. The north Londoners have no intention of selling their prized asset – especially ahead of their eagerly anticipated stadium move.

But when asked if he wanted to move to Real Madrid Kane said: “Sorry, not today.”

Kane is under contract with Tottenham until 2024 after signing a six-year deal worth £200,000 a week in June. Any transfer would likely cost in excess of £200m.

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