Arsenal and Chelsea are among the clubs to be approached over signing Atletico Madrid forward Joao Felix on loan until the end of the season. Manchester United have also been courted, but the finances involved in any deal for the Portuguese star may prove to be an issue. Felix was signed by Atleti back in 2019 after the 23-year-old completed a £110million transfer , but his return of just 34 goals and 18 assists in 130 appearances falls way below expectation.
Many have questioned Felix’s move to Atletico considering how Diego Simeone sets his team up to play, with some pundits suggesting the Portugal international would suit a more attacking style. The Gunners are in need of a new forward given Gabriel Jesus’ injury with there being some concerns at the lack of depth in Mikel Arteta’s attacking options should either Bukayo Saka or Gabriel Martinelli suffer an injury.
Graham Potter’s side continue to struggle lower down the Premier League table after another setback against Nottingham Forest, with a new forward thought to be on Todd Boehly’s transfer agenda this month, football.london understands. According to The Athletic , Felix’s agent, Jorge Mendes, has contacted multiple English clubs to lay out possible terms for a loan until the summer.
Initial conversations have focused on a €21million (£18.5million) package for the remainder of this season, with a €15million (£13.2million) loan fee going to Atletico, and the rest covering the player’s wages. Arsenal and Chelsea are both looking to sign an attacker, but neither are prepared to pay the requested loan fee and Felix’s salary. The two London clubs are thought to be open to negotiating a loan deal worth around half of the current asking price from Atletico and the player.
The report adds that the Gunners do like the 23- year-old forward and some influential figures at the club believe he would be an ideal addition, especially on loan. The current Premier League leaders see a deal for Felix as similar to the initial loan that brought Martin Odegaard from Real Madrid to the Emirates Stadium – with the north Londoners providing an opportunity for the player to reignite their career and potential to earn a permanent move in the summer.
Given that the size of the current package being offered to Premier League clubs is considered too expensive, even for a club with United’s resources, it shows that Arsenal and Chelsea will need the loan fee and salary to come down significantly before a deal can be agreed. Atletico and Mendes may lower their demands as the January transfer window progresses given Felix’s desire to leave the Spanish club and get his career back on track.