Real Madrid are said to be willing to trigger the €120m release clause attached to Inter forward Lautaro Martinez this summer, which would make him the most expensive Argentine player ever.

Inter snapped up Martinez from historic Argentine club Racing in 2018. And while he enjoyed a positive debut season, the 22-year-old has emerged as a superstar in the making in 2019/20.

Lautaro Martinez

Martinez has scored 16 goals in all competitions for Inter and has struck up a fine partnership with Romelu Lukaku at San Siro. He has also been heavily linked with Barcelona as a long-term replacement for Luis Suarez, but it may be Real who make the first move to poach him.

According to Argentine outlet TyC Sports, Real are prepared to pay the €120m it would take to release the player from his Inter contract. Los Blancos would also offer Martinez a lucrative deal that would be ‘difficult to refuse’ to pave the way for a June arrival.

TyC notes that the level of potential interest in Martinez – he has been linked with Manchester United and Manchester City as well as Barça – could mean the decision on where he moves to, if he moves at all, will come down to the player himself.

Real’s interest in Martinez is believed to be longstanding, with the report noting that the Spanish giants initially tried to sign him before he made his senior debut with Racing in 2015.

Lautaro Martinez

Real failed on that occasion, but the club has made a habit of scouting teenage South Americans in recent seasons and secured deals for both Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo before they turned 18. The club also went big to sign 18-year-old Reinier from Flamengo last month.

Having won three back-to-back Champions League titles between 2016 and 2018, Real are currently in the process of trying to recreate a squad capable of repeating that level of success.

Meanwhile on Friday, Catalan outlet ​Mundo Deportivo insists that Martinez is still Barcelona's 'chosen one' to arrive in summer, while they report his release clause as €111m.

Amid an injury crisis at Camp Nou, Barça have special dispensation to sign a striker outside of the transfer window. However, that signing must be either a free agent or a player already registered in Spain. As a result, the club are focussed on cheap, cheerful and versatile targets like Getafe's Angel Rodriguez and Alaves' Lucas Perez, who will not disrupt a big-money summer push for Martinez.

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