In Luis Suarez, Marcos Llorente, Joao Felix, and Thomas Lemar, the Colchoneros have one of the most effective attacks in the Spanish top flight, but they are keen on adding one of Nigeria’s finest youngsters ahead of a demanding campaign
Atletico Madrid have made Super Eagles winger Samuel Chukwueze their number one transfer target this summer and are willing to pull off every necessary trick to seal his move from Villarreal, according to respected Spanish publications, Elgoldigital.
Atletico won the Spanish league title on the strength of the top flight’s meanest defence, which conceded only 25 goals in 38 matches. Their attack relied a lot on Luis Suarez (21 goals) and Marcos Llorente (12), with the duo contributing nearly half of the side’s 67 La Liga goals.
Argentine manager Diego Simeone knows his forward line needs improvement if they are to successfully defend their league title and progress to the latter stages of the UEFA Champions League.
And the astute tactician has identified Chukwueze as the attacker to add some needed quality to Los Colchoneros.
With a $100 million release clause in Chukwueze’s contract, it won’t be easy to convince Villarreal to allow their precious jewel to depart on the cheap.
After a productive campaign that saw him played a crucial role in Villarreal winning the Europa League, Chukwueze is not short of suitors, with Marseille reportedly leading the chase for his signature.
But Atletico are planning to overtake other interested clubs by proposing an offer that Villarreal will find too tempting to refuse.
The champions are hoping to reduce the asking price for Chukwueze by including Colombian full-back Santiago Arias – a long-term Villarreal target – in the deal.
Villarreal manager Unai Emery is still interested in the 29-year-old right-back who spent last year on loan at Bayer Leverkusen.
And his inclusion in the deal could ease Atletico’s access to Chukwueze.
The lure of playing for the third biggest club in Spain and the Champions League next season could convince Chukwueze – a known admirer of the Premier League – to welcome the idea of switching to the Wanda Metropolitano.