Amid recent reports linking Raphael Verane with a move away from the Bernabeu, Real Madrid’s new summer signing, David Alaba says he would love to play alongside the French international.
Varane, whose contract at Bernabeu is due to expire in June 2022, has been on the radar of several European clubs, with Manchester United reportedly closing in on the 28-year-old.
“Of course I would love to play with Varane,” Alaba said during his unveiling on Wednesday. “For many years he has played excellent football and not just now. He is a wonderful defender and has great qualities,” he added.
Alaba – who has inherited the No. 4 shirt left vacant by defensive stalwart Sergio Ramos, said his focus is on establishing himself at the Bernabeu and not be be likened to his predecessor.
Ramos joined Paris Saint-Germain as a free agent, after spending 16 years at the Spanish club and six seasons as captain.
“They only had this number available but I know what this number means for the club. For me it’s an honour to wear it. I want to honour this number. It really motivates me. It’s a number that represents strength and leadership,” Alaba said.
“I haven’t come here to compare myself to other players. I’ve come here to be Alaba and to continue to be Alaba. I want to bring my qualities to this team. I’m a versatile player. I can play in different positions. Ramos has been more than a decade here and has played great football and is a leader. We all know that. It would have been a pleasure to have played with him,” he added.
Alaba, 29, joined Madrid as a free agent after 10 successful seasons at Bayern Munich where he won the Champions League twice, 10 Bundesliga titles and six German Cups.
“I decided to take another step in my career to grow as a player and as a person. Of course I received other offers but for me there was only one option and that was Real Madrid. This is a dream come true. It’s the biggest club in the world and that is the challenge I was looking for,” the Austria international said.