River Plate goalkeeper Augusto Batalla is edging closer to a move to Real Madrid, according to the Argentine club’s president.
Batalla, a member of Argentina’s under-2o side, was the subject of an approach from Real Madrid during the dying hours of the January transfer window. But the La Liga club were unable to complete the deal in time and the goalkeeper remained with River Plate.
However, Madrid have remained in contact with Batalla and appear to be closing in on an agreement which would bring the 18-year-old Argentine to Spain in the summer.
Batalla is considered the best goalkeeping prospect in Argentina and has already won two South American Championships as a member of the national team’s under-17 and under-20 sides.
According to River Plate president Rodolfo D’Onofrio, a loan move is “highly possible” and Batalla is keen to join the reigning European and world champions.
“He’s a good player whom Real Madrid have seen in action,” D’Onofrio told Radio Marca. “They’ve made a loan offer including the option to make the deal permanent for a sizable fee in 2016.
“Nothing is signed yet but he’s really interested and it’s highly possible everything will go through.”
Should the deal go through as expected, Batalla will likely train with the first-team during the preseason before being sent to play for Real Madrid Castilla, since the senior squad already boasts Iker Casillas and Keylor Navas – who are signed until 2017 and 2020, respectively.
Batalla has always been a fallback option for Real Madrid provided the club was unable to pry goalkeeper David de Gea away from Manchester United.
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