Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois has admitted that his personal situation will lead him to move back to Spain at some point in the future, leading to further gossip and speculation that he could be heading to Real Madrid in the summer.
Courtois, who has emerged as a reported target for Los Blancos following their failure to prise David de Gea away from Manchester United, famously spent three years on loan with Atletico Madrid between 2011 and 2014 and has a young family based in the Spanish capital.
"Everybody knows that due to my personal situation, Spain attracts me," the Belgian international stopper is reported to have told Spanish broadcaster LaSexta this week.
"If it is not now, it will be in some years," he added.
Rumours of a new Chelsea contract for Courtois have been ongoing for some time, but no new deal has been announced as yet and he will soon be entering the final year of his current terms at the end of the 2017/18 season. That makes it a dangerous situation for Chelsea.
The reigning Premier League champions are desperate to tie Courtois and international colleague Eden Hazard down to new long-term contracts, with manager Antonio Conte recently expressing hope that both deals could be wrapped up before the World Cup in June.
"It is normal during the season to have the contact between the player - or the agent of the player - and the club. I hope that at the end, Thibaut will sign his contract," the Italian said.
"I can give my opinion and for me these are two great players (Hazard and Courtois) especially because they have a lot of space for improvement. They are very young players and it will be great to keep them with us."