One of the transfers that highlighted the winter transfer window was that of Kieran Trippier to Newcastle United. The former Atletico Madrid player was the only Englishman in La Liga, but a crucial part of Diego Simeone’s setup.
Despite not having the most successful period in Spain, Trippier returned to England a far better player than he was. Needless to say, his departure was compensated by the arrival of Daniel Wass from Valencia at the end of the window.
Wass made his debut under Simeone at Camp Nou, coming on as a half-time substitute. He had a mediocre outing in his 45 minutes on the field, constantly struggling to fit into the new philosophy around him.
In the 90th minute, Wass clattered into Ferran Torres and was taken to the sidelines to be treated. Instead of being taken off, he was asked to play on for the remaining minutes, and Los Rojiblancos could end up paying dearly for Simeone’s decision.
As announced by the club, the Dane suffered an injury to his medial collateral ligament on his right leg. Preliminary examinations reveal a grade two sprain which could keep him out of action for close to two months.
In his absence, the manager will have to count on Sime Vrsaljko to cover at right-back. The Croatian had a disastrous first-half performance against Barcelona, managing only one defensive action in the entire half.
Simeone has come under immense criticism for his decision to persist with an injured Wass on the field and aggravate his injury. The club are now in fifth place and will have to hope for a slip-up from Barcelona or Real Betis to catch up.
Atletico Madrid will try to sign Arsenal, Liverpool target for free in the summer
Atletico Madrid saw a lot of movement during the January transfer window as they saw several players leave, while also bringing in a couple of new faces in.
But one player who they tried to sign and could not is Borussia Monchengladbach forward Marcus Thuram.
Indeed, according to AS, was on the top of director Andrea Berta’s list for the winter window as he is in the final six months of his contract. But, Gladbach asked for a fee of around €10-12 million to offload him, which prompted Atletico Madrid to move for Depay instead.
But the report states that Thuram continues to be on the agenda at the Civitas Metropolitano and Berta will try to sign him again in the summer transfer window.
However, there will be intense competition for the 25-year-old’s services given that he will be available for a free transfer at the end of the season.
Juventus and Inter Milan have shown an interest in Thuram, but there are a lot of clubs in England wishing to sign him up.
Indeed, Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur are all said to be gunning for the French forward’s signing while more clubs could join the list of his suitors as days progress.
So, it will be important for Atletico Madrid to achieve a top-four finish in La Liga and qualify for the UEFA Champions League for next season if they wish to attract a player of Thuram’s capability and calibre.
The 25-year-old has netted 13 goals and set up four more in 19 matches across all competitions. His ability to play anywhere across the frontline makes him an attractive prospect for interested parties such as Atletico.
But given the intense competition, Diego Simeone & co. will need to act swiftly if they wish to sign Thuram.