Analysis: Evaluating Real Madrid’s options to replace Karim Benzema this summer

Following Karim Benzema’s decision to join Al-Ittihad this summer, it means that Florentino Perez will be on the lookout for the new starting striker for Real Madrid this summer.

Benzema has left a giant void in Carlo Ancelotti’s squad, with the Frenchman having been the talisman at Real Madrid for the majority of the last five years. Whoever comes in will have big shows to fill.

Real Madrid have been linked with several big names, with the latest being Lautaro Martinez. According to Sport, the Inter Milan forward is a “Plan C” option for Perez, providing that neither Harry Kane nor Kai Havertz can be signed. He would also be rather expensive, with Inter wanting €100m.

Having now been linked with several talismans, Real Madrid must now decide who is most equipped to replace Benzema, and it is an interesting debate.

Harry Kane

Of the names linked with Real Madrid, Kane is certainly the most prolific striker. Having been at Tottenham Hotspur for the entirety of his career, aside from the odd loan spell, the 29-year-old has been remarkable.

He is close to catching up with Alan Shearer as the Premier League’s all-time top scorer, and he has done so at a time that is well-known for underperforming. In the 2022/23 season, he scored a sensational 30 goals in a team that finished eighth in the table.

However, Kane could be difficult to sign, despite only having a year left on his current contract. Spurs are determined to get at least €100m, which for a far-from-young striker, could put Real Madrid off.

Kai Havertz

Havertz is the other player that has been heavily linked with Real Madrid. However, in terms of a Benzema replacement, he is the least suitable to fill that role, despite having played as a number nine regularly for Chelsea.

Havertz was signed as an attacking midfielder/right winger, where he regularly played for Bayer Leverkusen, and it is arguable that player in either of these roles would make him a better option. Unfortunately for him, Real Madrid do not require reinforcements in either of these roles, and especially for the price that he would cost.

Randal Kolo Muani

Kolo Muani is a very interesting option, and there is scope to suggest that he is the best option for Real Madrid on this list. Aged just 24, he has many years ahead of him, and he has been playing at a very high level for Eintracht Frankfurt.

In the 2022/23 season, Kolo Muani scored 15 goals and provided 11 assists from striker, which is a very impressive feat. What will attract him to Real Madrid is his ability to link up with other players, especially considering the form of Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo. He will cost €100m, but it is figure that can be stomached for a 24-year-old.

Lautaro Martinez

Martinez is another very good option for Real Madrid, and aged 25, he is another one that could be relied upon for the next 10+ years. He scored 21 goals in 38 appearances for Inter in the 2022/23 season, which is very impressive return.

Compared to Kolo Muani, Martinez is a more prolific striker, and his all-round game is also very good. However, he does not have too much experience of playing as a lone striker, which could hinder his chances.

Nevertheless, as an option for Real Madrid, they could do far worse than splashing €100m on Martinez, and he is much better than a Plan C option. Given Inter’s financial issues, they could even look to lower the asking price, although the Nerazzurri could still stand firm.

Tags Harry Kane Kai Havertz Lautaro Martinez Randal Kolo Muani Real Madrid


    1. (1). The kid is only 16 at the moment. (2) He is struggling to find minutes even in the Palmeiras squad right now (3) He will need at least 3-4 years at Madrid (or on loan) before he becomes a key player.
      So it should be clear that 2028 is the earliest he can be expected to emulate the other Brazilian youngsters at RM. We have the business of competing in and winning the CL in those 4 seasons. So, an older and bit more established striker is needed NOW.
      Also – stop placing so much pressure on kids. Real Madrid is not an easy place to develop… and Endrick will not have Benz to help him develop. Remember Reinier?

  1. Amazing how you missed the point and wrote a paragraph in vain.

    The point of reminding author about Endrick is that its not reasonable to go for a striker who is under 28ish years if age as we just bought Endrick for 50 mil. Surely there was a point in buying him, what do you think?

    That being said, noone of these candidates except Kane really fit the bill. There has to be at least some chronological order of things, if the club is to be ran seriously. Meaning – if someone proposes a purchase it should be based on factual state of matter, not Championship Manager style spitballing which is pretty much useless.

    Noone is thusly putting pressure on Endrick. What would really upset him (and probably revolt him) is that we buy him and just bench him for another shinier toy.

  2. You originally implied that Endrick’s output would be a lot earlier and I simply pointed out the reality. The development of Endrick would have been ideal against the backdrop of an experienced, winning team. Unfortunately it looks like by the time he arrives, the old guard will all be gone. Therefore, his integration path will not be the same as Vini and Rodrygo… hence my original points still hold ground – read it again (I don’t write anything in vain).
    I have faith in the decision makers to create the necessary eco system for him to flourish – lets hope for that because nothing is guaranteed.

    1. My original impication was that newly purchased Endrick was left out of equation when looking at players whose age would effectively put someone of them on the bench by the time he is ready to be deployed and that is not a smart asset management. You assumed the rest.

      “The development of Endrick would have been ideal against the backdrop of an experienced, winning team.”

      I just cant figure out where that false dichotomy comes from, that by the time Endrick is deployed, we wont be an experienced winning team. We already have young players who won CL and some played deep in WC. Also by that time, Vini and Rodrygo will be leaders (as they already are world class players) and they will help him integrate because they know what it takes to help a young upcoming star settle, as they did.

      So do I. But since were a club thats run by socios, we need to invest money smart as we dont have literal states to back us up with oil money.

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