Real Madrid are in pole position to sign David Alaba on a free transfer next summer, according to reports.
The Austria international is edging closer to the exit door at Bayern Munich after discussions between the player and the club over a new deal broke down.
Alaba will be free to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with other clubs when the transfer window opens on January 1.
Chelsea are among the sides interested in signing the defender, who can play at left-back or centre-back and has even been used in midfield.
Alaba has spent his entire professional career to date at the Allianz Arena, having first joined Bayern from Austria Vienna aged 16.
He has won nine Bundesliga titles and two Champions Leagues during his time in Bavaria, and has now made more than 400 competitive appearances for Bayern.
However, Alaba now looks set for a new challenge after discussions over a new contract failed to make sufficient progress.
Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea are all thought to be weighing up offers for the defender.
Alaba is excited by the prospect of playing in another European league, with Real Madrid the option that reportedly appeals to him most.
Barcelona are unlikely to enter the race for his signature given their financial troubles, with Alaba holding out for a salary of around £9.2m.
Madrid also have an advantage because Alaba’s agent, Pini Zihavi, has a good relationship with the powers that be at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Chelsea therefore face an uphill struggle to sign the Austrian, although they have not yet given up hope of bringing him to Stamford Bridge.
Frank Lampard’s side lost their first Premier League game in almost three months on Saturday, going down 1-0 to Everton.
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