At first glance, Diego Simeone's chase on Alvaro Morata seems a stranger in January. Does not the Atletico Madrid coach prefer a Robocop center forward that runs through defensive walls? Why would gentle Morata even be on his radar?
Despite his predilection for robust strikers – Diego Costa is the prototype – the taste of the Argentine coach is more varied and cultivated than what he has the honor of.
This is the manager who had Mario Mandzukic packaged, because the couple did not even see it. He was happy for a while with Radamel Falcao as his front man and this season he often played with Antoine Griezmann as his center forward in the long-term absence of Costa.
At first glance, Diego Simeone's chase on Alvaro Morata seems a stranger in January
Mild-mannered Morata does not seem to be the obvious choice for Simeone & # 39; s Atletico Madrid
Simeone generally has a predilection for robust strikers – Diego Costa is the prototype
The second factor in all of this is Morata's Atletico past. Simeone puts huge stock in players who feel the colors & # 39; in the same way as he. Morata shared a dressing room with Koke in the youth team of Atletico. Only when he dropped the pecking order behind Borja Baston (who would later flop on Swansea), he moved to Getafe, where Real Madrid saw and drew him.
Atletico was the team of his grandfather and he was proud to start his career there. Simeone knows that emotional bonding is something that he can work to his advantage.
The Argentinian also supports himself as a coach. He believes he will get the best out of a player who has many of the attributes to make a top forward, but too often has been stopped, but a lack of belief in his own ability to be the bully and not the bullied on the field.
Simeone thinks he could make an Atleti warrior from him. His assistant Mono Burgos would play his part in the attempt at psychological make-over and fitness coach Oscar Ortega would work on a physical transformation.
His Atletico past, however, is an important factor – Morata (right) came through their youth system
Morata played with Koke, Atletico & # 39; s blood and thunderous midfielder, in the youth team
It should also not be forgotten that Spanish match officials usually lower the bar when it comes to whistling errors in La Liga. Morata would receive better protection. He could sometimes also be used in Costa gear as and when the former Chelsea center returns to full fitness.
The signing of Morata in January would also give Atletico Madrid half a season to see how he takes it to replace Costa, who is looking for a non-European payday earlier in the morning than on another day. If the role is not for him, Morata can eventually be used as a second striker by Simeone – it should not be forgotten that is very much how Jose Mourinho prefers to use him, even playing wide against Barcelona in a Clasico.
Simeone once whispered something in Morata's ear as he bowed across the sidelines in a derby from Madrid on the Bernabeu. & # 39; Come and sign for me & # 39; speculated the amateur readers.
Simeone is not always in favor of a big No. 9 that Antoine Griezmann played there this season
Morata can also operate as a second striker or wide, as he did at Real Madrid
Morata said the comment was not football-related, but admitted that he had an excellent relationship with Simeone, who won the double in Atletico Madrid as a player with Juanma Lopez, who is now Morata's agent.
All stars match on the personal side. There are still big financial obstacles to overcome. The view in Spain is that Juventus Gonzalo Higuain has to sell to Chelsea, first by delivering him from his loan in Milan. Atletico will then have to leave several players to terminate Morata's wages over the salary limit imposed by La Liga.
The club could move on to Nikola Kalinic and Gelson Martins, bringing them close to the £ 200,000-per-week Chelsea salary from Morata. They may not have to adjust their Premier League money because he has agreed to a wage cut to go back to the club he left as a 15-year-old.
It is a deal that remains in balance, but if it does not, it will not because Simeone is not a believer. He knows that the club can not afford to buy a Harry Kane or even an Edinson Cavani. He sees willingness, potential and value in Morata and he wants the club to take him to Spain.