|Álvaro Morata, via realmadrid.com|
The Good News: The very highly-regarded (and very sought after) canterano and striker (and don't forget the winner of the extremely prestigious "Raúl Gonzalez Blanco Award for Best Youth Team Player") for Real Madrid B, Álvaro Morata has signed an extension with los blancos through the 2015 season. This should ensure that Madrid won't let another top-notch talent like Juan Mata (who's currently on Valencia but, according to some sources, is being courted by Barcelona), slip through our fingers.
Morata is a tall, athletic young striker, capable of scoring with his head and his feet; because of this, Florentino and Mourinho (suggestions for a good nickname for those two anyone?) thought it necessary to lock him down. While he might not get an immediate shot at the big leagues, keeping him in the wings for a while makes sense: despite his enormous talent, he needs to develop and mature as a player, and isn't quite ready to start for los blancos.
The Bad News: According to MARCA, Fabio Coentrao, Benfica's (and Portugal's) highly sought-after left back, is still stuck in a sort of limbo with Madrid: because Florentino hasn't reached an agreement to sell any of the current players on the market (Lass Diarra in particular), Madrid is experiencing a cash-flow problem. Coentrao is aggravated (as he should be) that his future hasn't been settled yet, and is looking to move the deal forward as quickly as possible; unfortunately, this has allowed other teams--namely Chelsea--to sneak in on the bidding.
|Fabio Coentrao, via Marca.com|
Also, on the sort-of-bad-news-but-maybe-good-in-the-long-run side of things, Neymar's club has decided that they will "not negotiate," and that he's "non-transferrable." Maybe this is a ploy to drive up his asking price... but it might not be, especially because his agent recently said that "it's unlikely Neymar will play in Europe this year."
Again, this might actually be a good thing. While Neymar is no doubt a world-class talent, I actually see a lot more Robinho than Ronaldo in him: he seems much more of a high-risk/high-reward type of player than, for example, el Kun.
But really, does Madrid need either of those players (Neymar or el Kun) at all?