Ajax star Donny van de Beek confirmed Real Madrid are interested in signing him with their pursuit of Paul Pogba failing to move forward.
Netherlands international Van de Beek has been linked with a €60million switch to the Santiago Bernabeu should Madrid's attempt to bring Pogba in from Manchester United fall short.
The 22-year-old made 57 appearances for Ajax last season, scoring 17 goals and supplying 13 assists as Erik ten Hag's men clinched an Eredivisie and KNVB Beker double and reached the semi-finals of the Champions League.
Madrid's interest in Van de Beek led to him featuring on the front pages of Spanish sports newspapers Marca and AS on Friday.
"Of course I hear stuff like that from time to time. It's always good to hear, right?" Van de Beek told FOX Sports.
"But in fact the situation is still the same, even though the media keep telling new stories.
"Of course there is interest, but people tend to go way too fast."
On reportedly being a back-up option in case Madrid miss out on Pogba, he said: "I haven't heard it being said that way, but it could be.
"You shouldn't believe everything you read. There's always a lot of nonsense. I don't have to tell you what is true and what isn't.
"I'm focusing on [the match against Vitesse on] Saturday and the rest is up to you guys."
Ten Hag acknowledged it will be difficult to hold on to Van de Beek if Madrid step up their interest.
"Of course we don't want to lose him, so he have to do all we can to keep him here. But when clubs like that come around the corner, it will be very tough," he said.
"We did very well last year, so you know players will be wanted. We're a small football country. It's just how it works. How important is Donny for us? That's obvious. He had a mega development. He is extremely important."