Atletico have become a formidable force under Argentine manager Diego Simeone over the last decade and won the La Liga title in 2021, three years after they tasted Europa League success. Last season they knocked the Red Devils out of the Champions League before succumbing to Manchester City in the quarter-finals.
But this season the wheels appear to have come off and they couldn’t even salvage a place in the Europa League on Wednesday night after they were beaten by Porto in their final Champions League group match. And their squad could be about to break up.
According to Spanish radio station Cadena SER, Atletico have placed Joao Felix, Thomas Lemar, Rodrigo de Paul and Yannick Carrasco on the transfer list. And they need at least two of the stars to leave the club in January in order to balance the books.
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Midfielder Rodrigo de Paul only joined Atletico last summer following five years with Udinese. And he has become an important player for Simeone. The 28-year-old, who has won 43 caps for Argentina, reportedly turned down a move to Spurs in the summer. But if his days in Madrid are numbered, he may well reassess his options and agree to move to north London in January.
Spurs also reportedly attempted to sign Yannick Carrasco in the summer as boss Antonio Conte tried to build a squad that could compete for Premier League and Champions League silverware. The 29-year-old winger has only started half of his team’s matches this season. And with United and Chelsea also said to be sniffing around in the summer, the ace could well head to England when the next transfer window opens.
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