Barcelona interested in €120 million La Liga forward | OneFootball
Barcelona interested in €120 million La Liga forward
When Joao Felix signed for Atletico Madrid from SL Benfica in the summer of 2019, it was hailed as a huge coup. The then-teenager had become the talk of the town after emerging as one of the best young forwards in Europe and was on the radars of almost every top club in the continent.
However, Felix opted to sign for Atleti, believing that he would have a great chance of developing under Diego Simeone. The Rojiblancos shelled out a club-record transfer fee of €126 million to sign the Portuguese starlet. Two and a half years into his stint, though, the move seems to have backfired.
While there have been glimpses of the 22-year-old’s innate talent and abilities, Simeone has been unable to nourish and develop him into the world-beater he was expected to become. Injuries have not helped the ex-Benfica wonderkid’s cause while playing out of position in Atletico’s rigid system has not done him any favours either.
As a result, El Nacional is now reporting that Felix wants a way out of the Wanda Metropolitano in the summer. The 20-time capped Portuguese international is believed to have informed his desire to Atletico president Enrique Cerezo and instructed his agent to find a new club.
Despite his struggles in the Spanish capital outfit, Felix still has plenty of suitors. However, a potential roadblock in any move would be Atleti’s financial demands. The La Liga champions will want to recoup most of the money they shelled out on his signing, which will prove difficult in the current financial climate. They are hoping for some Premier League clubs to come forward.
Barcelona continue to hold an interest in Joao Felix
However, Felix’s situation has seemingly triggered the interest of Barcelona yet again. The Catalan giants were interested in the Portuguese starlet before his move to Atletico and even made an attempt to sign him this past summer as part of the deal that saw Antoine Griezmann move the other way.
Indeed, Barcelona had requested the signing of Felix in an exchange deal for Griezmann, but Atletico rejected the proposal. Instead, they offered Saul Niguez, but the Blaugrana turned down the Spanish midfielder.
Griezmann still ended up returning to his former club though, on a two-year loan deal with an obligation to make the transfer permanent for €50 million.
However, the report states that Barça president Joan Laporta would welcome the addition of a player of Felix’s abilities, while manager Xavi Hernandez has also given his okay to a move.
The Bluagranas are lacking players in their offensive unit, and have been linked to several players for the summer.
The club are, thus, set to explore the possibility of signing Felix from Atletico again next year, possibly in exchange for Griezmann, as they would be in no position to meet their La Liga rivals’ financial demands for the 22-year-old.
It will certainly be interesting to see if Barcelona are successful in their bid to land the Portuguese forward, having failed to do so once this summer.