MADRID (AP) – Real Madrid is one forward away from closing its squad for the new season, according to coach Jose Mourinho.
The Portuguese manager said on Tuesday his team was nearly complete as it prepared to end Barcelona's three-year monopoly on the Spanish league title.
''In my opinion and that of everyone we still need one more player, another forward,'' Mourinho said in an interview in Madrid's website. ''To be able to count on 90 percent of the team by the middle of July is fantastic, it allows us to prepare in another way.''
Madrid has signed five players already but hasn't splashed out on a big name so far, although Brazil striker Neymar and Atletico Madrid and Argentina striker Sergio Aguero have both been linked to the Spanish giant.
Mourinho was encouraged by how his squad was shaping up as its preseason camp was set to get under way in Los Angeles on Tuesday.
''We're also happy because we're building something to last. It's a team that has another 10 years in it,'' Mourinho said.
Mourinho's first season in charge yielded a Copa del Rey trophy with a victory over Barcelona, but Madrid stumbled against its biggest rival in the league and Champions League. The pair play twice before the Aug. 21 start of the season with a two-legged Spanish Supercup series on Aug. 14 and 17.
''The preseason isn't about the Supercup, it's meant to ready us for the season. In the second week of August we'll play the Supercup and then we'll think about the Supercup but in the meantime there are a lot of players away on international duty,'' he said. ''We won't think about one adversary or one small competition over the first four or five weeks of work, but about preparing the players and the team the best possible way.''
The league winner and domestic cup champion play for the Supercup, with the series representing the fifth and sixth meeting between the pair in 2011.