Much before Radamel Falcao became a Manchester United player, it almost seemed like a foregone conclusion that the Colombian striker would eventually ply his trade at the Bernabeu for Real Madrid.
The European champions were heavily linked with a move for Falcao when it became clear he would leave Atletico Madrid in the summer of 2013, and after the 28-year-old signed for Monaco instead, it was still seen as certain that the striker would make his switch back to Madrid a year later.
However, Real Madrid decided to keep their faith in Karim Benzema, while also choosing to pay a mammoth fee for Falcao's Colombia and then Monaco teammate James Rodriguez, allowing Manchester United to swoop in and ink an initial loan deal with the option of making it permanent from next summer.
Falcao was expected to take the English Premier League by storm, but injuries and the fact that he has not quite acclimatised to football in England have held him back, leading to suggestions Manchester United might not take up their option of making the loan move into a permanent transfer.
Real Madrid could take advantage of Manchester United's indecision, with the La Liga biggies reportedly ready to make a summer move for the striker, according to Fichajes.
Carlo Ancelotti and Florentino Perez still sees Falcao as one of the best marksmen in Europe and feels the Colombian can add that extra bit of quality to the side – not that Real Madrid need more attacking quality at the moment.
The possibility of a summer move for Falcao could increase if Karim Benzema is sold by Real Madrid. Recent reports have suggested Liverpool have made a £50 million offer for the France international striker in hopes of inking a summer transfer.
If Real Madrid, who currently have Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez on loan but are not expected to make the Mexican's stay at the Bernabeu permanent, feel the need to sell Benzema and decide Falcao is the better option for them, the La Liga side could use the money from the Benzema sale to sign the former Atletico Madrid striker.
Of course, all of that will be a moot point if Manchester United, as expected, take up their option to make the Falcao signing permanent.
Falcao still has the entire second half of the season to convince Louis Van Gaal that he will be worth all of that money the Premier League club will have to pay Monaco and the player himself if Manchester United pull the trigger and make the transfer a permanent one.