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Atletico Madrid interested in West Ham striker after missing out on summer deal



Photo by Alex Pantling/Getty Images

Atletico Madrid are looking at a reshuffle of their attacking department in January. Having already parted ways with Matheus Cunha, the Rojiblancos are likely to bid goodbye to Joao Felix as well.

The Portuguese international scored in Atleti’s 2-0 win over Elche on Thursday night, but is unlikely to remain a Rojiblanco for much longer, having been pushing for an exit for some time.

The likes of Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea are said to be interested in Felix. And his potential exit, coupled with Cunha leaving, will create a void in Diego Simeone’s attacking unit.

Thus, a new centre-forward is expected to arrive at the Civitas Metropolitano next month. Recent reports suggested that Borja Iglesias of Real Betis had emerged as Atletico Madrid’s priority target.

However, the Spaniard is likely to be an expensive option as he has a long-term contract with Los Verdiblancos. Hence, the Colchoneros are also looking at other possible targets in the market.

And according to Antonio Ruiz of COPE, West Ham United striker Gianluca Scamacca is a player that Atletico Madrid are interested in and are closely following.

The Italian striker had been on the La Liga giants’ radars in the summer as well, but a move could not be completed and Sassuolo sold him to West Ham United.

However, he has failed to settle down in London thus far, with the Hammers’ boss David Moyes being unable to coax the best out of the Italian hitman. In 13 Premier League matches, Scamacca has scored just two goals thus far, leading to rumours of an early exit.

Atletico Madrid are said to be keeping close tabs on Scamacca and his situation at West Ham. However, considering the big investment that the Hammers made on his signing in the summer, it is unlikely that they will be letting him leave just after half a season.

So, Los Colchoneros would be better served pushing for Iglesias or Enes Unal, who is also on their radars.

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Atletico Madrid News

Atletico Madrid midfielder on the derby against Real Madrid: “Very difficult to beat them”



Photo by PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU/AFP via Getty Images

Following a 1-1 draw in their Champions League opener against Lazio, Atletico Madrid will shift all their attention to La Liga, as they brace themselves for the derby against Real Madrid this weekend.

Heading into this game, Atleti midfielder Marcos Llorente spoke about Real Madrid’s quality and Atletico Madrid’s chances of squeezing all three points from this iconic derby.

Llorente on Madrid derby

“The sensations are good. The team is very good, the other day we played a great game despite ending up drawing. I really think that the team did a great job that must be maintained for this match,” Llorente said in an interview with Diario AS.

When asked whether or not Real Madrid being tagged as favourites could aid Atleti, the midfielder said, “Honestly, it neither motivates me nor demotivates me. We simply have to do what we work on during the week, what the coach asks of us.”

Llorente stressed the importance of the game, adding, “It is a great rival we have in front of us, they are having a very good start to the season and that motivates me and everyone to try to play a good game.”

Real Madrid is a great club, they have great players and it is very difficult to beat them. I think we have competed, we have also achieved several draws, but in the end, either you go out one hundred percent and do things very, very well or it is difficult to beat them,” he added.

A former member of the Real Madrid youth academy, Llorente joined Atletico Madrid in 2019. Since then, he has racked up over 150 competitive appearances for Los Colchoneros.

Llorente, though, said he feels no sense of vindication when he performs well against his former team.

“No. In the end, it’s been many years since I left there and I’m at Atlético. Perhaps in the first years, those types of feelings and sensations can arise, but today they no longer do,” he said.

Marcos Llorente confident of Atletico Madrid’s chances ahead of the derby (Photo by FILIPPO MONTEFORTE/AFP via Getty Images)

Llorente on Vinicius, Koke & Bellingham

The Atletico Madrid star went on to talk about other aspects of the game, including the fact that his team had one less player every time they faced Real Madrid last season.

“I have zero worries. These are things that are not in our remit, that escape our hands. We play football, the referees referee and those who have to decide decide,” he said.

Llorente, in fact, said that the return of Koke could be a real boost for Atleti. “It is always good that Koke is with us, both on the field and in the day-to-day life of the game,” he said.

“Beyond the grass. The support he gives, the advice he gives us, his experience. it is always important to have him and it is great news that he is already training with us,” he added.

Talking about the absence of Vinicius Junior and the form of Jude Bellingham, Llorente said, “Well, you have to be careful with everyone. All Real Madrid players are very good and can make a difference at any moment of the game. Bellingham is having a great start and we have to take that into account and be very focused.”

Finally, Marcos Llorente put out a message for all the Atletico Madrid fans, claiming their support ahead of this crucial encounter this weekend.

“It will be a full house as always. We don’t have to tell them anything, they know the importance of this match for Atlético, we know that they never fail, they are always supporting us and we count on them,” he said.

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