Tchouameni will try to break the curse of the No 18 shirt inherits Bale number

Aurelien Tchouameni has chosen to inherit Gareth Bale's No.18 shirt, with the Welshman set to depart Real Madrid when his contract comes to an end at the end of this month.

The Frenchman was presented as a new Real Madrid player on Tuesday and posed along with his parents in the trophy room at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.

Tchouameni's favourite number is the No.8, but he has also donned the No.16 and No.17 shirts.

At Real Madrid he will inherit Bale's No.18, whose No.11 shirt was taken by Marco Asensio when the Welshman departed to Tottenham on loan.

"I played a lot with No.8 shirt at the youth teams, at my clubs and national team, but Toni Kroos has No.8," said Tchouameni.

"I asked which numbers were available and I chose No.18, which is the closest to No.8."


The curse of the No.18 shirt

No.18 does not bring back good memories to Real Madrid, as some of the players who donned it, such as Jonathan Woodgate, Julien Faubert, Antonio Cassano, Luka Jovic, Mariano Diaz and Javier Saviola, struggled to live up to expectations.

Aurelien Tchouameni has discussed his decision to turn down Paris Saint-Germain and join Real Madrid, who presented their new signing on Tuesday.

The Frenchman admitted that he was approached by Kylian Mbappe, who tried to convince his Les Bleus teammate to join PSG, but Tchouameni had already made up his mind.

"As soon as Real Madrid's offer came along, I told my agent to close the deal," Tchouameni said at an introductory press conference.

"There were other negotiations, but the first option was Real Madrid.

"By the Champions League final there were already negotiations with Real Madrid and it's true that when I saw the games against PSG or [Manchester] City I wrote to my agent and said 'Do everything possible to take me there, please'.

"Kylian Mbappe decided to stay at PSG and he already knew I was leaving Monaco and wanted to know if I could go to PSG, but I told him I wanted [to sign for] Real Madrid and he understood perfectly."


Aurelien Tchouameni hopes to break the No18 hoodoo at Real Madrid.

Tchouameni has chosen to inherit Gareth Bale's No.18 shirt, with the Welshman set to depart Real Madrid when his contract comes to an end at the end of this month.

The Frenchman was presented as a new Real Madrid player on Tuesday and posed along with his parents in the trophy room at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.

Tchouameni's favourite number is the No.8, but he has also donned the No.16 and No.17 shirts.

At Real Madrid he will inherit Bale's No.18, whose No.11 shirt was taken by Marco Asensio when the Welshman departed to Tottenham on loan.

I played a lot with No.8 shirt at the youth teams, at my clubs and national team, but Toni Kroos has No.8, said Tchouameni.

I asked which numbers were available and I chose No.18, which is the closest to No.8.

No.18 does not bring back good memories to Real Madrid, as some of the players who donned it, such as Jonathan Woodgate, Julien Faubert, Antonio Cassano, Luka Jovic, Mariano Diaz and Javier Saviola, struggled to live up to expectations.

Who else did Tchouameni speak to before signing for Real Madrid?

Tchouameni went on to reveal that he also talked with compatriots Karim Benzema and Eduardo Camavinga before putting pen to paper on a Real Madrid deal.

"I have been lucky enough to speak to Benzema and Camavinga," he added.

"In the case of Camavinga we have seen how he has improved in his first year and I will be lucky enough to play at the club with the best striker in the world.

"When the negotiations were progressing, he wrote to me and asked if he could help me.

"Carlo Ancelotti spoke to me too during the negotiations and told me I should come to Real Madrid to continue learning."

The France international also stressed that he can play both as a holding midfielder and a box-to-box player in Ancelotti's 4-3-3 formation.

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Florentino Perez welcomed Aurelien Tchouameni with a warm speech in which he wanted to make it clear that the player prioritised signing for the club above the money offered from other clubs.

The Real Madrid president's words immediately brought Kylian Mbappe and PSG. Unconsciously or not, Florentino's speech was clearly aimed towards the French club and player.

Florentino made it clear that Tchouameni had more than one option on the table and that he chose his dream.

"Dear Aurelien, congratulations, because you are fulfilling your dream of playing for Real Madrid. At the age of 22 you had a choice and you have chosen Real Madrid," he stated at the presentation.

"Your teammates, Benzema and Camavinga, will have told you about the magic of the Bernabeu. Now you will discover it for yourself."

He continued to praise Tchouameni's decision.

"We have a great squad, with players who have won five Champions League titles, but the next challenges will be tough, so we must strengthen ourselves and sign players who believe in this club and who are hungry to win.

"Today begins a stage in your life that you will be proud of. In a few minutes you will wear the shirt of Real Madrid, the one you have chosen."

Florentino also had words of affection for Monaco, the club from which the player joined.

"We Madridistas are happy that a great talent like you has chosen Real Madrid. You come from a friendly club, like Monaco...," said the president, who for the umpteenth time underlined his praise for choosing Real Madrid.

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