Alerted to Barcelona's interest, Real Madrid have joined the race for Marseille's Maxime Lopez. Just 19 years old, the midfielder is one of Europe's most highly rated players thanks to his maturity and quality on the ball, while he's also capable of scoring and creating goals. He's a player like Andres Iniesta and Barcelona have been following him in the French league since last season.
Madrid are specialists at signing promising players at a low cost and later easing them into the first team, such as Marco Asensio and Dani Ceballos, or loaning them out, as is the case with Martin Odegaard. Madrid are now following Lopez's evolution along with Barça.
Zinedine Zidane's presence is an added incentive for Lopez given they were both born in Marseille. "He is small, but it's fascinating how he plays. I am impressed by his character. He runs a lot, sacrifices and creates play," said the Madrid boss in March (hos sons have played with the Lopez so he knows him well).
However, the presence of Andoni Zubizarreta at Marseille is something which Barça have in their favour if they decide to move for the player. In addition, Lopez is a close friend of Ousmane Dembele, who he has played with for France's youth teams.