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Thursday 9. August 2018 - 12:01

Keylor Navas staying at Real Madrid despite Thibaut Courtois arrival

Goalkeeper Keylor Navas has no plans to leave Real Madrid despite the arrival of Thibaut Courtois from Chelsea.

The Costa Rica international has guided Los Blancos to three successive Champions League triumphs but is likely to be demoted by new boss Julen Lopetegui. Courtois is expected to assume the number one position in goal for Real having agreed a £35m move from Stamford Bridge following seven years in west London.

The deal will also see Croatia international Mateo Kovacic join Chelsea on loan for the duration of the 2018-19 season.

Navas would be forgiven for feeling pragmatic about his hopes of playing a significant role for the Bernabeu club this season upon Courtois’ arrival but the 31-year-old is ready to fight for his future.

"Of course, and I say this with force, I have the same desire to leave that I have to die," Navas told Spanish radio station Onda Cero.

Prior to Courtois becoming a Real player, speculation was rife that Navas could be offered an extension to his current contract which expires in 2020. But it remains to be seen whether the 12-time European champions will indeed make good on that intention after welcoming Courtois back to the Spanish capital.

The Belgium international will be unveiled as a Real player this afternoon, a move which has divided Chelsea supporters.

Maurizio Sarri’s side have acquired Kepa Arrizabalaga for a world record £71.5m after activating the 23-year-old’s release clause but fans attacked Courtois for his exit after he posted a heartfelt message following completion of the move.

He wrote on Instagram: "I fulfilled a childhood dream playing in the Premier League, therefore I am really proud that we were able to win two Premier League titles, a League Cup and a FA cup! ‘A huge thank you to all my teammates and technical staff over the past four years who I shared this success and amazing moments with, both on and off the pitch."

"I want to thank the fans for their great support over the years. I hope you understand that being closer to my kids was considerable in my decision."

"I wish you all the best for the future. It was a great honour to be part of the CFC Family."

However, Courtois was quickly forced to remove the post after being inundated with criticism from Chelsea fans for the manner of his departure.

Provided by: Frank Henriksen
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