Portugal forward Joao Felix has put out a strong message amid strong speculation linking him with a transfer away from Atletico Madrid in January. It has been widely reported that the 23-year-old is the subject of interest from the likes of Aston Villa, Manchester United, Chelsea, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint-Germain.
Felix has fallen down the pecking order with Atletico Madrid this season and things haven’t quite gone to plan for the 23-year-old since he made a huge £113 million transfer in 2019, as he has failed to live up to the almighty expectations placed before him. But with one goal and two assists in three starts for Portugal in Qatar, Felix has showcased that he is still a top talent.
He had just won the Golden Boy award and was widely regarded as one of the best young players on the planet before heading to the Wanda Metropolitano. By no means has Felix been awful, and far from it - but he has been unfortunate to not quite hit the mark at times. Atletico are now hoping to recoup as much of the figure they paid for him as possible.
“Signing [Felix] was the biggest bet the club made in its history,” Atletico’s club chief told TVE, via Marca. “He is a top world-class player, but because of the relationship with the coach, his playing time, his motivation, it’d be reasonable to analyse an option for him to depart. It’s reasonable to think that he might leave, although I’d love him to stay. But that’s not the player’s plan.”
Villa are believed to be the early favourites to land Felix, but the player is fully focused on another job in hand with Portugal doing so well over in Qatar. Felix and his teammates thrashed Switzerland 6-1 in the Round of 16 and they have a rather favourable Quarter Final tie against dark horses, Morocco.
“I’m not gonna speak about Atlético Madrid and my future in this moment. I will speak about that after the World Cup,” Felix said via Fabrizio Romano. “I’m 100% focused on the World Cup, I represent my country here”.
No decision will be issued until Portugal’s World Cup fate is decided, then, but Felix has all but confirmed there is indeed a choice to be made upon his return to Spain. If Villa were to sign the forward, he would be the marquee signing Unai Emery has been hoping for.