Real Madrid have been heavily tipped to sign Chelsea superstar Eden Hazard this summer. But with Chelsea reportedly unwilling to sell for less than €200m and increasing speculation from Spain that Real refuse to pay that kind of money, any deal seems increasingly unlikely.
Previously famed for a Galacticos transfer policy under the presidency of Florentino Perez that has seen world records broken to sign Luis Figo, Zinedine Zidane, Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale over the years, Real have not completed a major transfer of that kind since 2014.
The €80m spent on Colombian hero James Rodriguez after the 2014 World Cup is the last time that a Galacticos-type deal happened at the Bernabeu, with the club consciously opting to pursue younger talents to develop themselves in the years since.
The €100m departure of Ronaldo to Juventus has brought unsurprising speculation that the reigning European champions will dive into the transfer market head first to replace the five-time Ballon d'Or winner, but it hasn't happened and there seems a genuine reluctance to do so.
It was recently reported by one source in Spain that Real have no plans to break their existing transfer policy and return to the old Galacticos ways. That subject has been brought up again by Mundo Deportivo, claiming that Perez won't sanction spending more than €100m on a player.
It is still a relatively large sum to spend, but certainly nowhere close to world record territory and the kind of bar raising that Real have been known for in the past.
Real were thought to have been unwilling to meet Roma's enormous asking price for goalkeeper Alisson, one of the reasons he went to Liverpool. And it makes the Daily Mail's new claim that Real have suddenly offered £100m (€112m) for Willian somewhat hard to swallow.
Real's most expensive signings since 2014 has been the €45m capture of Brazilian teenager Vinicius Junior, formally unveiled at the Bernabeu last week but a player who was just 16 years of age when his move to Madrid was initially agreed. Fellow Brazilian teenager Rodrygo Goes has also been snapped up for €45m and will move to Spain when he turns 18 next year.
The speculation and headlines surrounding alleged deals for Hazard, and possibly a few others, won't end. But the chances of Real actually signing any of them are slim and diminishing.