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Tottenham, Manchester United interested in 29-year-old Atletico Madrid superstar



Photo by Angel Martinez/Getty Images

According to Nizaar Kinsella of the Evening Standard, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester United are considering a summer swoop for Atletico Madrid mainstay Jan Oblak in 2023.

The Slovenian international has been a permanent fixture in goal for Atletico for nearly a decade now and has established himself as one of Europe’s best in his position during that time.

A pivotal member of the team, Oblak has been linked with a move to the Premier League in the past as well. However, 2023 could finally see the 29-year-old secure a move to England as two heavyweights of Premier League are keen.

Tottenham Hotspur are putting together a long-term succession plan in place for club captain Hugo Lloris. The Frenchman will turn 36 in a couple of months and his contract will expire in 2024, meaning he will be in the final year of his contract next summer.

And Antonio Conte’s side are working to secure an heir for the goalkeeping spot, leading to their interest in Oblak. The report goes as far as saying that the Atletico Madrid shot-stopper has become the Lilywhites’ No. 1 target, with the club even sounding him out over a possible move.

However, Tottenham might have to face competition from Manchester United, who have been keeping tabs on Oblak for a long time and could make a push for him as a replacement for David de Gea.

The Spaniard is in the final year of his contract with the Red Devils and there is no guarantee as of yet that he will continue at Old Trafford. Hence, Manchester United have asked to be kept in the loop about any developments surrounding Oblak and his future.

The report adds that Atletico Madrid, for their part, would be open to selling the 29-year-old after having had him at the club since 2014.

Oblak signed a new contract this past summer, extending his ties with the club until 2028. However, despite that, Atleti might consider letting him go for a reasonable fee.

There had been interest from Chelsea as well in the past. And while there have been grumblings about Edouard Mendy and Kepa Arrizabalaga’s situation at Stamford Bridge, there is no indication that the Blues are pursuing Oblak.

As things stand, Tottenham are strongly interested in the 29-year-old while Manchester United are also keeping tabs on his situation.

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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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