With Jose Mourinho questioning Alvaro Arbeloa’s suitability as a first choice right-back at Real Madrid, he has now identified Kyle Walker and Glen Johnson as potential replacements for the former Liverpool man.
Mourinho believes that £16.5million will be enough to land either of the full backs, and has set aside such an amount to budget for a position he has had trouble strengthening since his arrival at the Bernabeu.
He is now looking to rectify that, and although he may face a tougher fight to secure the signature of Walker from Tottenham Hotspur, he is believed to be the Portuguese boss’s preferred target.
Walker has had a breakthrough season at White Hart Lane, establishing himself as first choice right-back under Harry Redknapp and winning his first England cap in the process, and as he is still only 21, Spurs may demand a fee in excess of the £16.5million that Mourinho wishes to pay.
Inclusion in England’s Euro 2012 squad, as expected, would also see Walker’s value further increase, and it appears that the Spanish giants could have to stump up a huge fee to land the former Sheffield United full-back.
With that in mind, Mourinho could instead turn to Liverpool defender Glen Johnson, who has featured more sporadically in the Premier League this season amidst injury troubles.
Despite only signing a contract extension last summer, Johnson would be a cheaper option than Walker due to his age, and could be set for a reunion with Mourinho, who he worked with at Chelsea.
Scouts of Real are high on both players after numerous viewings throughout the season, and it is thought that the club will make the ultimate decision on which player to make a firm offer for come the end of the season.