Chelsea agree on deal for Portugal World Cup ace – media
Struggling Premier League side Chelsea have agreed on a deal to sign Portugal international Joao Felix, 23, on loan from La Liga side Atletico Madrid, according to numerous reports.
Chelsea, who were pummelled 4-0 by English champions Manchester City in Sunday’s FA Cup fixture, have vastly underperformed since a consortium fronted by US-based businessman Todd Boehly secured ownership of the London club in a multi-billion dollar deal from former owner Roman Abramovich in May.
New boss Graham Potter, who replaced their Champions League-winning coach Thomas Tuchel in September, has yet to identify a proven goalscorer at Stamford Bridge, with summer signings Raheem Sterling and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang collectively finding the net just nine times so far this season.
And as the club looks to arrest its decline, which has left them mired in tenth position in the Premier League, as well as being eliminated from both domestic cup competitions, reports have indicated that they have moved to bring Joao Felix to galvanize the club’s frontline.
Atletico Madrid made Felix the fifth most expensive player in history when he moved to the Spanish capital from Benfica at the age of 19 in 2019 for a sum of £113 million ($138 million).
Felix’s critics would say that he has underperformed in Spain, particularly given his gargantuan price tag, scoring 34 times in 131 appearances – though others suggest the rumors of a rift with Atletico boss Diego Simeone have contributed to his relative lack of goals.
He was most recently seen in the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, where was an integral part of former boss Fernando Santos’ plans, scoring his first World Cup goal in Portugal’s 3-2 win against Ghana.
He also provided two assists in his team’s 6-1 demolition of Switzerland.
It has been reported that Chelsea will pay £8.8 million ($10.7 million) to take Felix on loan until the end of the English season, and that there is no clause to permanently purchase him as part of the agreement.
Chelsea are also thought to be in the market for several more players in the January transfer window, with Benfica’s World Cup-winning midfielder Enzo Fernandez linked, as is Ukrainian winger Mykhailo Mudryk from Shakhtar Donetsk.
The Blues have already signed French defender Benoit Badiashile, Ivorian forward David Datro Fofana, and young Brazilian midfielder Andrey Santos in recent days.