It’s official. Real Madrid have this Wednesday afternoon confirmed that Luka Modric has renewed his contract at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
The club and player, have agreed on an extension of the player’s contract until June 30, 2023.
Croatia midfielder Luka Modric has signed a one-year contract extension with Real Madrid and will stay at the European champions at least until June 2023, the club announced on Wednesday.
The announcement was made not long after the 36-year-old won his fifth Champions League title in a decade with the LaLiga champions. He also won the Ballon d’Or in 2018.
In confirming Modric’s new deal, Real Madrid are continuing to build their squad for the 2022/23 season, in which they’ll seek to defend their status as Spanish and European champions.
After the official confirmation of the capture of Antonio Rudier and the completion of Aurelien Tchoumeni’s signing, Real Madrid have taken another step towards finalising the squad that will work under Carlo Ancelotti next season.
As far back as November 2021, they’ve got the job done and the Croatian is tied down for the coming season.
Luka Modric’s contract renewal until 2023 opens up a series of new challenges for the Croatian, who is already a legendary figure at Real Madrid.
Setting aside his title haul (20 in 10 years, including five Champions League trophies), Modric’s influence with the fans can’t be quantified. Despite some initial hesitations, the Croatian has continually made his presence felt on the pitch and in the dressing room, where he has become one of the leaders of the team.
His influence is recognised by everyone associated with the club, so much so that his recent contract extension shows he’s still committed.
Real Madrid extended Luka Modric’s contract for another year on Monday, keeping intact the midfield that helped the club win a record-extending 14th European title this season.
The 36-year-old Croatian signed a new deal with the Spanish club until June 2023 and will return to play alongside Toni Kroos and Casemiro, the trio that helped Madrid win five Champions League titles in the last nine seasons.
Puskas record gets closer
Modric wants to retire at Madrid, and he’s closer to achieving that given his new contract expires on June 30, 2023 at the age of 37 years, nine months and 21 days. That means he’ll have surpassed such legendary names like Miguel Angel and Francisco Gento, while still trailing Ferenc Puskas, Francisco Buyo, Jerzy Dudek and Alfredo Di Stefano.
The Hungarian remains the club’s oldest player after featuring at the age of 38 years and 233 days. That means that if Modric were to carry on like he did last season (45 games and 3,500 minutes played) in 2022/23, there’s a good chance he could pass Puskas if he agrees to stay on past that.
The new stadium
Modric’s new deal also means that he will play at the renovated Estadio Santiago Bernabeu. While the work is scheduled to be completed at the end of the year, it is currently behind schedule.
The Croatian was one of the players left in awe by the planned work, and he made it clear he didn’t want to miss out on playing in the stadium once it was ready to be unveiled.
A global challenge
Modric’s priority was to continue playing, and he’s managed to do that while being the current Champions League holder. That will certainly boost his confidence as he prepares for the World Cup in Qatar, which will be played in November and December of this year.
Croatia will head to the tournament after finishing runners-up to France in 2018, and they should pose a threat once again.
Another challenge for Modric is to see whether he can win another Champions League trophy with Los Blancos. He’s already part of a select group, along with several teammates and Cristiano Ronaldo, to have won it five times, but Gento’s record of six is now in touching distance.
Madrid will bring in the likes of Antonio Rudiger and Aurelien Tchouameni to help with that, while one or two more signings are expected as well, meaning Los Blancos will once again challenge for European club football’s most coveted prize.
To boost its defense, Madrid recently signed former Chelsea central defender Antonio Rüdiger on a free transfer. It had added former Bayern Munich central defender David Alaba last season. Veteran left back Marcelo is leaving the club.
Madrid won a record-extending 35th Spanish league title this season.