Real Madrid have reportedly identified Brahim Diaz as a potential replacement for Marco Asensio.
Throughout the summer transfer window, Asensio was frequently linked with a departure from the Bernabeu due to having just a year remaining on his contract.
Due to a number of factors, the playmaker eventually remained at Los Blancos, but the 26-year-old has endured another frustrating six weeks under Carlo Ancelotti.
Just four substitute appearances totalling 48 minutes have been made in all competitions, Asensio said to be left frustrated at failing to feature from the bench against Mallorca earlier in September.
Unless the Spain international is provided with more game time during October and the start of November, it appears highly likely that he will be able to speak with foreign clubs regarding a pre-contract agreement in January.
Nevertheless, according to reports in Spain, Real already have an alternative in mind should Asensio opt to become a free agent.
Diaz, who represented Real between January 2019 and September 2020, has been able to kick-start his career at AC Milan after only being given rare outings in his homeland.
Over the past two seasons, the 23-year-old has contributed 12 goals and nine assists from 86 appearances for the Italian giants, helping his current club win Serie A during 2021-22.
Although the Spain international has been less influential since the middle of August, Milan will give serious consideration to activating his buy option next summer.
The report says that clause stands at €22m (£19.62m), although it is an approach which may eventually be matched by Diaz’s parent club Real.
Last season’s Champions League winners are able to activate a €30m (£26.75m) clause if they wish to retain the services of the former Manchester City youngster.
At a time when president Florentino Perez may be focusing his attention on other areas of the pitch, effecting keeping Diaz for £7m may be regarded as value for money.
Before moving to Milan, Diaz only made six starts and 15 substitute outings for Real, chipping in with two goals and three assists.