Stoke will be sweating on the future of star Asmir Begovic after the Real Madrid moved to prepare a summer swoop for the stopper, the Daily Star has reported.
Begovic saw his Bosnia side dumped out of the World Cup at the group stages but could be offered a cure for his heart ache with a dream move to the Bernabeu.
Arsenal were thought to be interested in the keeper but it is Carlo Ancelotti who is at the front of the admirer’s queue, who wants to sign the player he twice tried to capture during his time at Chelsea.
Madrid are currently suffering a goalkeeping dilemma – first choice Deigo Lopez looks set to head to Italy this summer and Iker Casillas, who was mainly used as a cup and back up keeper last season, has endured a torrid World Cup with many feeling he is past his legendary best.
And Ancelotti now sees it as the perfect time to turn his admiration into a transfer, with what is expected to be around a £15m bid for Begovic’s services.
Begovic only signed for Stoke for £3m back in 2010 from Portsmouth and has established himself as one of the league’s best and also most consistent.
Boss Mark Hughes knows there will be a flurry of interest in his man but will remain determined to hang onto the Bosnian – although unable to stand in his way if the right offer is tabled.
Think you know your football? Share your knowledge, tips and comments to win cash prizes in OLBG's tipster competition – £11,000 to be won monthly!