Manchester United: Red Devils well-placed to sign Joao Felix
Manchester United and Arsenal are the front-runners to seal a loan move for Atletico Madrid star Joao Felix, according to reports from Spain.
The Lowdown: Felix on United’s radar
The 23-year-old has been linked with a move to Old Trafford a number of times in recent months, especially since Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure in November.
Felix appears to be unsettled at Atletico currently, struggling to earn consistent starts (just five in La Liga this term) and potentially looking for a new challenge in January.
A fresh report suggests that United could be well-placed to secure a move for the 2019 European Golden Boy winner and grant him an escape route from the Spanish capital.
The Latest: Man United well-placed for Felix
According to Spanish outlet AS on Monday [via Sport Witness], United and Arsenal are the ‘two best-placed clubs’ to snap up Felix in the January transfer window.
Atletico are demanding a fee of approximately €100m (£88.1m) to sell him outright and are unwilling to budge on that figure. However, the La Liga club are amenable to a loan exit until the end of the season if a fee of €9m (£7.9m) is forthcoming, albeit without an option to sign permanently.
The Verdict: Would bring star quality
There is an argument to say that, following Ronaldo’s exit, United could do with an out-and-out striker more than a number 10 of Felix’s ilk, but he could still be a superb signing for the short-term if Erik ten Hag brings him in.
Hailed as “special” by team-mate Alvaro Morata, he possesses genuine star power, as highlighted by his aforementioned Golden Boy win in 2019 and transfer fee of €126m (£113m) that year; and he could thrive in a more technical, attack-minded team than the often conservative Atletico of Diego Simeone.
At 23, Felix still isn’t in his prime, so Ten Hag may see him as someone who could blossom into a consistent world-class talent over time; and perhaps if the Portuguese gem is a hit on loan at Old Trafford, a permanent transfer could subsequently be sought.