James Rodriguez has to find a way out of Real Madrid this summer, says Carlos Valderrama, as Zinedine Zidane has made it abundantly clear that he “doesn’t want him”.
A move away from the Santiago Bernabeu for the Colombia international has been mooted for some time.
Bayern Munich opted against turning a two-year loan into a permanent transfer, but various other landing spots have been mooted.
Serie A giants Napoli are considered to have been leading the chase, with Carlo Ancelotti eager to secure a reunion with a player he has previously worked with in Spain.
No deal has been done as yet, but there is still time before the latest transfer window slams shut.
Colombia legend Valderrama believes it is imperative that James pushes through a switch prior to the deadline, with there clearly no future for a talented 28-year-old under Zidane.
He told Blog Deportivo: “James? He should go to another team.
“The coach doesn’t want him and he won’t play if he stays in Real Madrid. He should leave, that’s just how it is.
“When James signed for Madrid the fans were excited and so was the president, but the coach just doesn’t want him.”
A potential opening at Real for James has presented itself, with Marcos Asensio suffering an unfortunate knee ligament injury.
Zidane has, however, offered no indication that he is prepared to wipe the slate clean and offer the South American playmaker a fresh start.
With that in mind, Valderamma wants to see a fellow countryman find the recognition he deserves elsewhere.
He added: “The problem here is that he is not going to play if he stays in Real Madrid.
“It would be better for him to leave, given that the coach is the one in charge of the starting lineup.
“Considering his skills he can play in every club.”
James is still under contract at Real until the summer of 2021, so a sizeable fee will be required to free him from that agreement despite his standing down the pecking order in the Spanish capital.