Three possible candidates who can replace Kroos at Real Madrid

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For the next season, Real Madrid will have a giant-sized void to fill in their squad as one of its most senior, decorated, and beloved players, Toni Kroos, announced his decision to hang up his boots after the UEFA EURO 2024.

It is clear that there will be no other Toni Kroos, and it will be impossible to get a like-for-like replacement for the German midfielder, as it was not only his impeccable abilities on the field that made him unique, but his experience of being in the cream of the footballing talent for so long also made him a truly remarkable player.

Still, Real Madrid will have to minimize the impacts of this loss by getting another player who can play a similar role in the team. In this regard, MARCA has identified three players who can be of interest to Los Blancos.

Firstly, there is Kroos’ compatriot Joshua Kimmich, whose playing style is not exactly similar to that of the retiring midfielder, as he plays more as a pure midfielder, covering the entire center of the field, while Kroos had a less mobile profile. However, Kimmich’s international experience and proven ability would help him replace the leadership void left by Kroos to some extent.

The current Bayern Munich midfielder’s contract ends in 2025, and if the Bavarians decide to sell him this summer, he can be an interesting option for Real Madrid. However, his age might be a negative point for the Merengues as he is already 29 years old.

Inter Milan’s Nicolo Barella can be another intriguing option for Los Blancos, and of the three options discussed here, he will fulfill most of the demands of the White club in regards to similarities with Kroos, his age, experience, and technical quality. However, his position in the midfield is more oriented to the right, while Kroos plays mostly on the left.

While his profile is not exactly that of Kroos, his offensive and defensive performance and ball progression numbers are quite similar to that of the German midfielder. Furthermore, at 27 years of age, Barella has a good balance of youth and experience, and he also has experienced winning Serie A with Inter Milan and also played in last year’s UCL final.

However, he is currently valued at €75 million, and also has a contract with the Milan club till 2026. Thus, getting him will not be easy for Real Madrid.

Lastly, there is Joey Veerman from PSV Eindhoven, who is the least known of the three players, but is perhaps the most Kroos-like player in this list. His position and movement on the field are quite similar to that of Kroos, but he plays more as a pivot than as an interior midfielder.

Like Kroos, he also leans to the left side of the field and has shown a high successful passing percentage while playing balls from the deep. He is also reliable when given free-kick duties. His offensive and defensive contributions and ball progression numbers are very similar to Kroos’, but his ability to retain the ball and resist pressure still needs some polishing.

He also lacks the experience that Kroos offered, or the other two players in this list can also offer. However, he is also cheaper than both of these players, as he is valued at €32 million, with his current contract also going till 2026.

Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari
Ahmad Sarmad Ansari, a dedicated sports journalist and Real Madrid fan, has written over 2000 articles for Barca News Network and Madrid Voice. With a degree in Political Science and English Literature from Forman Christian College, he provides expert analyses and comprehensive La Liga coverage.

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