Things haven’t gone as planned for Joao Felix at Chelsea. The former Benfica man was picked up by Todd Boehly and Co to lead Chelsea’s line of attack for a minimum of six months.
An exorbitant deal that saw the Blues splash out more than €8 million to acquire the services of the 23-year-old for six months has not gone down very well for either of the parties involved.
The loan spell was finalised without an option to buy in hopes of saving Chelsea’s derailed campaign. With 2 goals in 15 matches under three different managers, however, Felix has not convinced the board to make his stay in London permanent. The stats are clearly not the numbers Chelsea was expecting in return from this deal.
As the season draws to its conclusion, feelings are pretty clear inside the Blues’ camp, which seems reluctant to fulfilling Atleti’s demands of €89 million. If a permanent deal is not finalised between the two sides, Felix would be forced to return back to his parent club in the capital city of Spain.
In the latest turn of events however, even if Chelsea are to negotiate a deal to make the loan move permanent, they might have to battle it out with Felix’s newest suitors, Newcastle United.
The Magpies have been on a steady climb under manager Eddie Howe. A tactical masterclass in over three windows saw the Newcastle board mindfully upgrade their squad without spending big on a marquee signing.
Currently fourth on the league standings, Newcastle look destined to qualify for the Champions League next season.
As they push for a top-four finish with few games to go, reports from Cadena SER suggest that the side is seeking to attain the services of Joao Felix next season.
Already a team with a solid midfield and the best defence in England, the board might be looking to improve upon Newcastle’s attacking unit. The addition of a playmaker of Felix’s quality could prove to be precisely what the team requires to put up a challenge in European competitions.
With the arrival of new owners last season, cash will not be a problem for the Magpies if they are to go after Felix. The probable move might also turn out to be the change of fortune Felix needs to revive his career at the club level.
That said, Eddie Howe will need to make some tactical adjustments for Felix to fit in. The 45-year-old currently fields a 4-3-3 with a holding midfielder. The formation creates no room for a player of Joao Felix’s attributes to prosper.
Amid Newcastle’s alleged interest in the Portuguese’s services, his parent club Atleti are desperate to sell Joao Felix.
The 23-year-old arrived from Benfica at a record transfer fee in hopes of taking the mantle from Griezmann as Atleti’s next superstar. Things did not pan out in an ideal manner though, as Atletico now look to offload Felix from their wage bill and recover as much of his €113 million fee as they can.
The Madrid outfit requires funds to invest in the summer transfer window, and Joao’s huge salary could turn out to be a major area of concern for Atletico next season.
According to Cadena SER, Newcastle will need to fork in at least 80 million Euros get the Portuguese marksman in their ranks
Chelsea’s last two games have seen Felix lose his place from Lampard’s starting line-up, raising even more concerns in the Atleti camp.
Not wanted by Diego Simeone anymore, Los Colchoneros would pounce on any opportunity they get to sell off Felix. If Newcastle comes up with an offer anywhere near Atletico’s demands, it might be an easy target to achieve for the Magpies.
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