Kovacic puts Premier League clubs on alert with latest declaration

Mateo Kovacic has put the Premier League, and the rest of the Europe, on high alert after reiterating to new Real Madrid boss Julen Lopetegui that he wants to leave.

Croatia midfielder Kovacic struggled to break into the Real starting XI last season – with Casemiro, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos blocking his progress.

As a result of his lack of game time, Kovacic asked for a meeting with the new chief Lopetegui to find out his role in the squad – but the ‘cordial’ conversation failed to change his mind, according to Marca.

Manchester City, Bayern Munich, Juventus and Manchester United are all reportedly keeping tabs on the situation, with Real set to slap a £80million price tag on Kovacic.

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City are in the box seat, having already made an enquiry, as they search for a transfer alternative to Jorginho, who has joined Chelsea.

"I would like to play more at Madrid because I love football and being on the pitch," Kovacic told Marca last month.

"I know that at Madrid it’s difficult to be a starter, especially because I arrived very young.

"I understand the situation but that’s why I think it’s best for me to go to another club where I will have the chance to play regularly as a starter.

"It’s an opportunity that I think I can have and I want it now.

"The problem is that it’s difficult for a young player to have continuity and without that I will never be able to show my potential.

"When I don’t play of course I’m not happy.

"I’ve enjoyed these three years in Madrid hugely, with incredible teammates, winning trophies… But I haven’t been completely happy because my contribution to all of this has not been the biggest and it’s something I want to change."

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