Atletico Madrid make €126m Joao Felix fifth most expensive player in history

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Atletico Madrid have signed Joao Felix from Benfica for a fee of €126million on a seven-year contract to make him the fifth most expensive player in history.

The deal is more than the 19-year-old Portuguese forward’s €120m release clause and Atletico will pay the fee in instalments.

Felix, who was linked with Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool and Real Madrid, scored 15 goals in 26 appearances in his first season of senior football last term.

He also became the youngest player to score a hat-trick in the Europa League when he hit a treble against Eintracht Frankfurt.

He made his international debut for Portugal in the Nations League semi-finals last month.

A statement on Atletico’s official website said: “Our club and Benfica have reached an agreement over the transfer of the young Portuguese footballer.

“The forward has already passed his medical at the Clinica Universidad de Navarra and signed his new contract for the next seven seasons.”

Only Neymar, Kylian Mbappe, Philippe Coutinho and Ousmane Dembele have moved on for more.

Most popular

Jasper Cillessen passes Valencia medical as Neto is set to become No2 at Barcelona

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
Jasper Cillissen.

Barcelona goalkeeper Jasper Cillessen has passed his medical at Valencia and is close to completing a move to the Mestalla, with Neto set to move in the opposite direction in a swap deal.

Dutch custodian Cillessen travelled to Valencia on Tuesday and, according to reports in local media, underwent his medical exam ahead of a transfer which will cost in the region of €30 million.

The Netherlands goalkeeper made 32 appearances in his three seasons at Camp Nou as back-up to Marc-Andre ter Stegen and his last game was the Copa del Rey final defeat to Valencia at the end of May.

The 30-year-old has been keen to leave the Catalan club in search of regular first-team football and he will replace Neto as Valencia No1, with the Brazilian goalkeeper set to move in the other direction.

Neto spent the last two campaigns with Los Che after two seasons with limited opportunities at Juventus.

The two transfers are set to be completed separately, with Neto to complete his move to Barca for the same price before the end of this month, in order to help out Valencia with Financial Fair Play, and Cillessen’s set for early in July.

That is in order for the deal to be funded in a different financial year, 2019/20, with the money to come out of Valencia’s transfer budget for next season.

Most popular

Diego Simeone admits Atletico Madrid might have to 'update' to integrate Joao Felix

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • Mail
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • G+
  • WhatsApp
  • Pinterest
  • LinkedIn

Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone expressed his enthusiasm for the club’s rebuilding process after losing a chunk of the core in the transfer window.

The Argentine admitted that performing consistently over seven years is no easy task and praised his club for dealing with departures well and is confident that they can do so yet again.

“It’s a difficult transitional moment, but we have great enthusiasm,” he told Fox Sports.

“It’s a continuous challenge and today we are faced with one because big players who have given a lot to the club are leaving.

“We want Atletico to compete again as we have done so far.

“It has been seven and a half years of finishing second, third, first, second… that isn’t easy.

“A renovation has been underway since last season when Fernando Torres, Gabi, now the likes of Juanfran who were references of the team and my guys who gave me everything, and did amazingly well,” Simeone stated.

“Now we are preparing the likes of Oblak, Saul, Gimenez to transition into becoming leaders.

“They are not the same as the others were, you have to look how to empower them and convince them,” he said.

Among many potential arrivals at the Wanda Metropolitano, Benfica star Joao Felix stands out as the cream of the pick. Simeone is confident of the club’s ability to nurture young talents and is of the opinion that Felix can grow to his potential as well. But the 49-year-old also admitted that the team might have to play differently should the Portuguese be integrated.

Joao Felix

“If Joao Felix and others arrive with different characteristics to those who have been here before, then we will have to update ourselves.

“In training we will see how they are going. It is clear that this year’s challenge is one of the toughest since we arrived at the club.

“Atletico are a club who historically buy young players to develop.

“We want a guy with talent and who can absorb our ideas. Like Oblak did when he came, who was not the Oblak we know today, and like Gimenez or when Lucas Hernandez arrived at the academy, like Griezmann when he came, who not the same as he is today,” he concluded.

Most popular