Atletico Madrid recently completed a deal with city rivals Real Madrid that sent Marcos Llorente to the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium, and now Los Rojiblancos might be on the verge of completing a similar move, but this one with one of the most talented players Madrid have within their ranks.
Despite the strong interest from Serie A side Napoli, Atletico are weighing up a move for James Rodríguez as the Colombia international looks set to leave Real Madrid this offseason. James returned from Bayern Munich this summer after spending two years on loan in Germany, but he’s not part of Los Blancos plans for the upcoming season.
With Madrid trying to recover some of the €303m they've already spent ahead of the 2019/20 season, the option to sell the Colombian star is more than appealing for them. It was believed that Napoli had the upper hand to secure Rodriguez’s signature this summer to reunite with manager Carlo Ancelotti once again, but now Atletico look set to change all these plans and take James under their wing.
According to Cadena SER, Rodríguez would actually prefer to stay in Madrid next season instead of moving abroad, and he’s apparently waiting to hear an offer from Diego Simeone's side. However, this won’t go through so easily, even though the player is said to be pushing for that move more than any other.
There are two main reasons why Atletico landing James doesn’t sound like a plausible (and good) idea, with the biggest being their intends to sign Benfica wonderkid Joao Felix this summer, following a €126-million offer for the teenager.
Besides, James’ style of play doesn’t exactly match Simeone’s, so that would be a big problem for both parties, especially seeing the struggles of players like Thomas Lemar, Vitolo, and Angel Correa to be comfortable under the Argentine boss’ tactics.
Real Madrid are trying to send James abroad and a move to Napoli looks like the most appealing option for them at this moment. Right now the most plausible scenario is that James will be sent on an initial one or two year loan to Napoli, with the Serie A outfit expected to commit to an obligation to buy the Colombian.