New Chelsea manager Mauricio Pochettino “doesn’t want” Atlético Madrid star João Félix
Atlético Madrid president Enrique Cerezo has revealed that Félix will return to the club after an unsuccessful loan spell in the Premier League.
Atlético Madrid chairman Enrique Cerezo took part in a talk at the Complutense University of Madrid on Tuesday and took attendees somewhat by surprise with his forthright comments on João Félix, who the club sent out on loan to Chelsea in the January transfer window. While discussing several players who may or may not return to the Spanish capital for next season, Cerezo suggested new Blues boss Mauricio Pochettino isn’t a fan of the Portuguese star.
João Félix’s unorthodox loan move to Chelsea
After a much-publicised falling out between Félix and Atleti boss Diego Simeone earlier in the season, the 2020/21 LaLiga champions shipped the former Benfica playmaker off to London, with Chelsea paying a reported €8 million fee for the privilege of taking him on loan until the end of the season. In an unusual move, Félix extended his contract in Madrid until 2027 before heading to the Premier League.
Chelsea’s season to forget
The Blues had endured a torrid first half of the season and hoped his signing, along with that of several others, could inspire them to greater things. Instead, Félix was sent off on his debut against Fulham and scored just four goals in 16 Premier League games as Graham Potter was sacked, Chelsea finished in the bottom half of the table and were eliminated from the Champions League in the quarter-finals.
Portugal star “not in Pochettino’s plans”
The Portugal international is far from being solely to blame, it should be said, but Cerezo’s comments suggest in-coming manager Pochettino hasn’t been too impressed with what he has seen from the 23-year-old.
“We found out less than 24 hours ago that he’s not in the plans of the new Chelsea coach. He’ll come back once his loan deal is over and then we’ll see what happens. We don’t have any plans on what to do with him, but he’s an Atlético Madrid player”, Cerezo explained.
What does the future hold for João Félix?
The future doesn’t look especially promising for Félix in Madrid, given that the whole reason he left was because of his fractured relationship with Simeone, who doesn’t look to be going anywhere just yet. On top of that, Atleti have improved considerably in the second half of the season without him, which doesn’t bode well in an on-field context either.
Will another move be on the cards in the summer?