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Real Madrid Reignite Interest In Serie A Defender After Drop In His Price-Tag: Good Option For Zidane?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

According to a recent report by the Spanish news outlet, Real Madrid are set to rekindle their interest in securing the signature of Milan Skriniar from Inter Milan this summer. The same source has also reported that the Slovakian centre-back’s price-tag has dropped from €100m to just €48m due to the financial toll that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought on the transfer market which could see Los Blancos come back in for the player in this off-season.

Skriniar’s Excellent Form At San Siro This Season

The talented centre-half has enjoyed an impressive campaign in the Serie A after establishing himself as a top performer at the heart of Antonio Conte’s defence. The 25-year-old has been responsible for putting in a series of dominant displays for Inter during this season. He has been involved in 32 matches for the Milan giants this term, receiving a total of 2762 minutes of game time across multiple competitions.

Skriniar has averaged 1.2 tackles, 0.9 interceptions and 2.9 clearances per game in the Italian top tier this season. However, he had performed a bit better in Europe where he had averaged 2.5 tackles, 1.8 interceptions and 2.3 clearances in every 90 minutes of UEFA Champions League football before the season came to an abrupt halt due to the COVID-19 outbreak (stats via whoscored).

The Slovak talent has successfully transformed himself into one of the best centre-backs in the Serie A as evidenced by his recent form at San Siro. He has also earned 31 senior caps for the Slovakia national team but is still waiting to score his first goal for his country. Slovakia manager Pavel Hapal will expect Skriniar to play an essential role for his side in the UEFA European Championship finals qualifier against the Republic of Ireland which has been postponed indefinitely because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Milan Skriniar of FC Internazionale gestures during the Coppa Italia Semi Final match between FC Internazionale and SSC Napoli at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on February 12, 2020 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images)

What Are The Slovakia International’s Best Attributes?

Skriniar is a dominant figure inside his own penalty area as he tends to win most of his aerial duels with the opposition. He can use his incredible strength to outmuscle the opponent and is often quick to react when reading the danger at the back. The Slovak centre-back can position himself well to make some vital interceptions and last-gasp clearances for his side. Plus, he is also not afraid to commit himself by putting his body on the line to block a goal-bound shot.

Is Skriniar A Decent Option For Los Blancos?

Skriniar has all the attributes required to be a grand success at the Santiago Bernabeu Stadium if Zinedine Zidane can find a way to seal a move for him this summer. He will not only add a lot of quality to the Madrid backline but also enhance the overall depth of Zidane’s squad. Furthermore, the former Sampdoria defensive ace could also serve as an ideal long-term replacement for Sergio Ramos, who is inching closer towards the end of his illustrious career.

Skriniar has the skillset to form a solid defensive partnership with Raphael Varane for years to come and will go a long way in solving all of Zidane’s defensive headaches from this campaign. He will also allow the Madrid head coach to be more flexible with his team selections, formations and tactics in the upcoming season which is a bonus considering how much the Spanish club has struggled to compete across all fronts in recent times.

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