Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has warned Manchester United that he will not sell James Rodriguez for less than what the Spanish champions paid for him back in 2014.
The Columbian, who arrived at the Bernabeu off the back of a sensational World Cup for €80 million, has pin-pointed Man United as his preferred next destination following another disappointing campaign under Zinedine Zidane.
But Perez, when asked about Rodriguez, belligerently insisted that, should United sign Rodriguez, it would be for more than €80m.
“I do not want to undergo an interrogation. I do not have to disclose our intentions. We will do the best for the club according to what the manager and the sports management want,” Perez said.
“How I am going to devalue one of the best players in the world as James. James is a Madrid player and Madrid players do not leave when they want or when their parents or agents want. We have to match the interests of the players with those of the club. And above all prevailing the interests of the club.”
Madrid, following successive Champions League triumphs, are the undisputed kings of Europe and club football in general at this given time, which has given Perez license be as dictatorial and profiteering as he pleases.
This is, of course, bad news for United, who will have to pay at least €155m for Alvaro Morata and Rodriguez. The former is necessary, you sense, following Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s departure, but will Mourinho be prepared to invest further in a player who wasn’t on the list of targets handed to Ed Woodward earlier this year?