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Who’s going to take the No.7 shirt at Real Madrid now that Cristiano Ronaldo has left? 

There's a big jersey to be filled at the Santiago Bernabeu

We’re currently stuck in that weird period between the end of the World Cup and the start of the new season.

But don’t despair, because we still have transfer rumours and gossip, fantasy football and even new shirt numbers to talk about.

So isn’t that good?

This happened

Getty - Contributor
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This happened

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We already know that Cristiano Ronaldo has made the No.7 shirt his own at new club Juventus, stealing his preferred number away from the obliging Juan Cuadrado – who’s settling for No.49 for a pretty brilliant reason.

Then there’s the rumours that Kylian Mbappe will be taking the No.7 at PSG, following Lucas Moura’s departure to Spurs in January.

Eye on the prize

Regis Duvignau
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Eye on the prize

And with Ronaldo leaving Real Madrid, suddenly the famous No.7 shirt is available.

So who on earth is going to pick it up and attempt to follow in the impossible footsteps of Ronaldo?

We think the choice is obvious (and no, it’s not Eden Hazard).

Big shoes to fill

EPA
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Big shoes to fill

22-year-old Marco Asensio is considered one of the best young prospects in world football, having burst onto the scene in 2016 when he scored in the UEFA Super Cup against Sevilla.

More recently, he was of the stars of Madrid’s Champions League campaign last season, often coming off the bench and impressing.

So surely, if anyone is going to step up and become the next Ronaldo, it should be him, right?

Is this about to get an upgrade?

REUTERS
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Is this about to get an upgrade?

Of course, wearing the famous shirt number at the Bernabeu – which was worn by Raul before Ronaldo – will put a lot of pressure on the youngster, who’s still not the finished the article and is seemingly not a guaranteed starter at the club.

All of that might change this season, if Asensio is given the task of stepping up and helping replace the seemingly irreplaceable Ronaldo.

Picturing him in white?

REUTERS
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Picturing him in white?

But if Eden Hazard does move to Madrid this summer – which he’s heavily rumoured to – then he’ll surely want the number for himself.

Hazard has emerged as Madrid’s top target to replace Ronaldo this summer, with both Neymar and Kylian Mbappe set to stay at Paris Saint-Germain.