Real Madrid goalkeeper Diego Lopez could be reunited with former manager Jose Mourinho at Chelsea for the 2014-15 season, according to a new report from Spanish news outlet Sport.
The Chelsea manager is preparing a bid for the 32-year-old Spaniard, according to a Saturday story in Sport. Mourinho also brought Lopez back to the Bernabeu from Sevilla in January while the Portuguese still managed Los Blancos.
Lopez initially replaced longtime starter Iker Casillas while the club captain recovered from a hand injury. However, a string of fine performances, including a dazzling display against Manchester United in the Champions League, allowed Lopez to win over Mourinho and remain the first-choice keeper.
He continues to perform strongly under new manager Carlo Ancelotti and he has started every match in La Liga so far in the 2013-14 season.
Rumours indicate this performance has convinced Mourinho that the Spaniard is a good fit for Stamford Bridge. The Portuguese coach is already a fan of Lopez, and after Madrid’s Champions League victory in Manchester, he said that the Spaniard “was the best player in [his] team.”
Allegedly, Chelsea already approached Lopez to discuss the possibility of moving to London in the summer 2014 transfer window.
Longtime Blues goalkeeper Petr Cech has been a stalwart since arriving during Mourinho’s first reign in 2004. His contract lasts through the 2015-16 season, though he could face competition if Lopez arrives in the summer. Lopez could also fill the void left when veteran goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer’s one-year contract expires in the summer.
Some believe that young Belgian star Thibaut Courtois, who has been on loan at Atletico Madrid since arriving at Chelsea in 2011, could usurp Cech when he returns at the end of the current season. Courtois is highly regarded and has already won the Europa League and Copa del Rey with Atletico.