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Real Madrid 'put Tottenham's Harry Kane at top of six-man striker shortlist'

Real Madrid 'put Harry Kane at top of six-man striker shortlist'
© Reuters
Real Madrid reportedly put Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane at the top of a six-man striker shortlist to succeed the outgoing Karim Benzema this summer.

Real Madrid have reportedly made Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane their number one target to succeed Karim Benzema this summer.

Los Blancos had initially planned to wait until 2024 before shelling out a large chunk of cash on a new marksman, as Benzema was expected to sign a new one-year deal.

However, following a whirlwind few days, the Ballon d'Or winner is now confirmed to be leaving the Spanish giants at the end of the season amid links with a switch to Saudi Arabia.

Both Benzema and Carlo Ancelotti had played down such speculation when it surfaced a few days ago, but the Frenchman will now end his glittering 14-year stay at the Bernabeu.

With Marco Asensio, Eden Hazard and Mariano Diaz also saying their goodbyes, Real Madrid have suddenly been left bereft of attacking options, with only Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo now holding the fort up front.

Real Madrid players throw Karim Benzema in the air after the match on June 4, 2023© Reuters

Ancelotti has unsurprisingly admitted that his side will need to dip into the market for a new number nine this summer, and according to The Mirror, Kane is their number one target.

Despite sitting at the top of the goalscoring charts for both Spurs and England - breaking the club and country records during a productive 2022-23 campaign - Kane will turn 30 this summer without having won a major trophy.

The 29-year-old found the back of the net 30 times in the recently-concluded Premier League season, but Spurs' otherwise lacklustre campaign saw them finish eighth and miss out on a spot in Europe for the first time since 2009.

Kane will soon enter the final year of his contract at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, and while Daniel Levy is fighting tooth and nail to keep him, the Spurs chairman is unlikely to run the risk of losing the striker for nothing in 2024.

Manchester United, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain are also believed to be monitoring developments, and Levy would supposedly prefer to sell to a foreign club instead of strengthening one of Spurs' Premier League rivals.

Tottenham Hotspur's Harry Kane celebrates scoring their first goal on April 23, 2023© Reuters

Real boss Ancelotti is said to have informed Florentino Perez and general manager Jose Angel Sanchez of his desire to work with Kane, but the England captain's current preference is to remain in England as he aims to surpass Alan Shearer's all-time Premier League goalscoring record.

However, Los Blancos have drawn up a list of alternative options should Kane's desire to remain in England win over, and the 29-year-old is thought to be just one of six names under consideration.

Napoli's Victor Osimhen is also on the shortlist, but Real have baulked at the Italian champions' £140m asking price, while Atalanta BC starlet Rasmus Hojlund could be available for £100m less.

Chelsea's Kai Havertz could also be offered an exit route from Stamford Bridge, having snubbed Real to join the Blues three years ago, but he has struggled to convince on a regular basis in the Premier League.

Roberto Firmino would be available for Real on a free transfer ahead of his exit from Liverpool, while Espanyol's Joselu is already said to have agreed a summer move to the Bernabeu, but he will be a backup option to a big-money signing.

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