Tag Archives: atletico

Alex Ferguson sends Manchester United scouts to watch Radamel Falcao

Fergie steps up move for 47m Falcao as United send chief scout to watch Atletico striker score a double

By
Graeme Yorke

PUBLISHED:

10:50 GMT, 15 April 2013

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UPDATED:

11:17 GMT, 15 April 2013

Manchester United watched Radamel Falcao score twice for Atletico Madrid on Sunday night as Sir Alex Ferguson ponders a summer deal.

Sportsmail revealed last week that Ferguson is considering a 47million deal – that could involve Javier Hernandez as part of a swap – to land the Colombia striker.

As United won 2-0 at Stoke, Ferguson sent his chief scout Jim Lawlor to watch Falcao strike a brace in their 5-0 thumping at home to Granada.

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Wanted: Radamel Falcao (left) in action during Atletico Madrid's victory over Granada

Wanted: Radamel Falcao (left) in action during Atletico Madrid's victory over Granada

Wanted: Radamel Falcao (left) in action during Atletico Madrid's victory over Granada

Wanted: Radamel Falcao (left) in action during Atletico Madrid's victory over Granada

Star man: Falcao struck a brace in the triumph for Atletico at the Vicente Calderon

Lawlor is likely to return with
glowing reports of a striker who is also interesting Chelsea and
Manchester City, along with Europe's big guns.

Manchester City and Chelsea have both
been strongly linked with Falcao, who has established himself as one of
the world's most prolific marksmen by scoring 56 goals for Atletico
since arriving in Spain from Porto in 2011.

But it is United have
now joined the bidding for the 27-year-old Colombia star and are prepared to
let striker Hernandez move to Madrid as part of the deal.

On his way Javier Hernandez in action against Stoke on Sunday - but he could be off

On his way Javier Hernandez in action against Stoke on Sunday – but he could be off

Give us a hug! Sir Alex Ferguson celebrates with Robin van Persie during the win at Stoke

Give us a hug! Sir Alex Ferguson celebrates with Robin van Persie during the win at Stoke

The Premier League leaders are ready
to meet the 47m buyout clause in Falcao's contract by offering Atletico
27m cash plus Hernandez, who they value at 20m.

If they were to land Falcao it
would be a bitter blow to Chelsea, who thought they were winning the
race to sign him, and City boss Roberto Mancini who believes Robin van
Persie's decision to choose Old Trafford over the Etihad Stadium last
summer has been a key factor in this season's title battle.

However,
any club wanting to sign Falcao will have to resolve an issue of
third-party ownership due to the fact that a company run by former
United and Chelsea chief executive Peter Kenyon and agent Jorge Mendes
has owned a stake in the player since helping to finance his 34m move
from Porto.

VIDEO: Watch Falcao do what he does best – goalscoring

Fernando Torres has been ruined by Chelsea – Mauricio Pochettino

Chelsea have ruined the striker who once tormented me, says Saints boss Pochettino

By
David Kent

PUBLISHED:

09:01 GMT, 30 March 2013

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UPDATED:

09:02 GMT, 30 March 2013

Southampton manager Mauricio Pochettino believes Chelsea might be responsible for the decline of striker Fernando Torres.

During his time at Espanyol, Pochettino was pitted against a fearsome Torres when he broke into the Atletico Madrid first team and the 41-year-old remembers being tormented by the young striker.

Torres left Atletico for Liverpool in
2007 and took to Premier League life exceptionally well. But since a
50million move to Stamford Bridge, the Spain international has
struggled to recapture the devastating form shown in Madrid and on
Merseyside.

Superstar: Fernando Torres burst onto the scene at Atletico Madrid

Superstar: Fernando Torres burst onto the scene at Atletico Madrid

Shell: Torres has been in decline ever since joining Chelsea from Liverpool for 50million

Shell: Torres has been in decline ever since joining Chelsea from Liverpool for 50million

Pochettino, whose Southampton side aim to topple Chelsea at St Mary’s this afternoon, believes Torres has not looked at ease since moving to west London.

'I have played against Torres many times and he scored some goals against me,’ Pochettino told The Daily Star.

'I remember him being a quality player, full of strength and a player who knew which spaces to run into to create chances.

'Sometimes it happens where a player is comfortable and feels happy at a certain club as he was at Atletico and at Liverpool.

'But when you leave that club and join a new team maybe you do not feel as comfortable and as happy and that can affect your performances.

Candid: Pochettino remembers being terrorised by Torres during his time at Espanyol

Candid: Pochettino remembers being terrorised by Torres during his time at Espanyol

'I do not know if Torres will leave Chelsea but what is clear is there is no doubting his quality.'

Jack Cork further stoked the fires before this afternoon’s match by saying he would not swap Saints’ top goalscorer Rickie Lambert for Chelsea’s World Cup winner.

The 31-year-old Liverpudlian has scored 13 goals in his debut Premier League season, whereas Torres has only netted seven times this campaign.

Cork, who spent 14 years at The Bridge, said: ‘Rickie has been different class for us for the last three or four years.

'For someone of his build, his touch is unbelievable. He is great to have in your team.

'Torres and Demba Ba have scored lots of goals in their careers and you don’t pay 50m for someone who isn’t any good.

No way: Jack Cork says he would not swap Torres for Saints striker Rickie Lambert (second right)

No way: Jack Cork says he would not swap Torres for Saints striker Rickie Lambert (second right)

'But if you asked who I’d rather have in my team, I’d say Rickie.'

Cork, 23, heads into this afternoon’s match to face the club he left in 2011, having been at Chelsea since the age of eight but never making a senior appearance.

He added: 'Chelsea was massive for me and from the age of eight it was my dream to play for them. It was frustrating towards the end but I loved it when I was there.

'We had a good set of young players who have all gone on to play a high standard. That was when Chelsea were doing well and winning titles — so I can understand why nobody was given a chance.

'With the managers chopping and changing there is always a lot of pressure on them to win games, so it’s tough to blood youngsters.'

Heavy heart: Cork (left) left Chelsea after 14 years at Stamford Bridge

Heavy heart: Cork (left) left Chelsea after 14 years at Stamford Bridge

Manchester City eye summer swoops for Napoli"s Edinson Cavani and Celtic"s Victor Wanyama

EXCLUSIVE: 52m Ed boy! City to break record for Napoli ace Cavani and also eye Bhoys star Wanyama

By
Sami Mokbel

PUBLISHED:

21:37 GMT, 13 February 2013

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UPDATED:

21:37 GMT, 13 February 2013

Manchester City are ready to begin a 60million-plus overhaul of their squad with summer moves for Napoli’s Edinson Cavani and Celtic’s Victor Wanyama.

Manager Roberto Mancini and football director Txiki Begiristain have recognised the need to freshen up the under-performing Barclays Premier League champions and will offload at least four players to help satisfy the demands of UEFA’s financial fair play guidelines.

City opened talks over a move for Napoli’s prolific forward Cavani last month and were initially put off by his 52m release clause.

Top target: Manchester City want to buy Napoli's Edinson Cavani in the summer

Top target: Manchester City want to buy Napoli's Edinson Cavani in the summer

However, with Chelsea in pole position for Atletico Madrid’s Colombian superstar Radamel Falcao, City have returned to the Uruguay international and are prepared to break the British transfer record to sign him.

Cavani is currently Serie A’s leading scorer with 18 goals, helping his club to second place, five points behind leaders and the defending champions Juventus.

Both Napoli and Cavani’s representatives are aware of City’s intention to pursue the 25-year-old during the summer transfer window. But Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain are also poised to bid.

Star man: Cavani has proved to be a star in the Champions League

Star man: Cavani has proved to be a star in the Champions League

Mancini missed out on signing Robin van Persie from Arsenal last summer and has bemoaned the fact ever since.

City have fallen 12 points behind neighbours Manchester United in the Barclays Premier League title race.

And the club’s hierarchy are determined not to miss out on another top target.
City will help offset their outlay by selling 25m-rated striker Edin Dzeko in the summer.

The 26-year-old Bosnia forward is wanted in Italy and Germany and is keen to kickstart his career after playing a supporting role this season.

In demand: A number of clubs have had their eye on Victor Wanyama

In demand: A number of clubs have had their eye on Victor Wanyama

He will be followed by other big-name sacrifices as City also look to bring in a new centre back and defensive midfielder.

Meanwhile, Celtic powerhouse Wanyama was watched by City scouts on Tuesday night against Juventus and they were joined in the crowd by representatives from Chelsea and Arsenal.

The Kenyan, who impressed despite playing the second half with an injured ankle, has also been watched by Manchester United.

He is valued at 10m, however the 21-year-old has only 16 months left on his contract and will be eager to join City’s all-star squad.

Real Madrid 4 Getafe 0 match report

Real Madrid 4 Getafe 0: Hat-trick hero Ronaldo passes 300 club goals as champions end explosive week on a high

By
Lee Bryan

PUBLISHED:

13:31 GMT, 27 January 2013

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UPDATED:

13:54 GMT, 27 January 2013

Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat-trick and passed the landmark of 300 club goals as Real Madrid put a turbulent week behind them with a 4-0 win at home to Getafe in La Liga on Sunday to close to within four points of second-placed Atletico Madrid.

The build-up to the game at the Bernabeu had been dominated by a report in Marca sports daily that said captains Iker Casillas and Sergio Ramos had threatened to leave unless coach Jose Mourinho was dismissed.

Real president Florentino Perez called a news conference to deny the story and accused the newspaper of lying and the Spanish champions let their football do the talking with a comfortable victory against their city rivals.

Big hug: Mesut Ozil celebrates with hat-trick hero Cristiano Ronaldo

Big hug: Mesut Ozil celebrates with hat-trick hero Cristiano Ronaldo

Prolific: Ronaldo scored his 300th club goal as Real Madrid smashed Getafe 4-0 in an early kick-off

Prolific: Ronaldo scored his 300th club goal as Real Madrid smashed Getafe 4-0 in an early kick-off

Mourinho, who turned 50 on Saturday, left several key players out of his starting lineup, including Xabi Alonso and Sami Khedira, and Real struggled to break through a determined Getafe defence in the first half.

Once Ramos had scrambled the ball into the net at a corner eight minutes after the break the home side turned the screw and Ronaldo struck three times in 10 minutes, the first his 300th club goal.

The Portuguese, who was substituted with around 15 minutes left after a knock to his right ankle, scored five for Sporting, 118 for Manchester United and now has 179 for Real thanks to his 20th career treble.

Lead: Sergio Ramos scored the opening goal for Real Madrid

Lead: Sergio Ramos scored the opening goal for Real Madrid

Lead: Sergio Ramos scored the opening goal for Real Madrid

Real have 43 points from 21 of 38 matches, with Atletico on 47 ahead of their match at Athletic Bilbao later on Sunday when they will be without injured top scorer Radamel Falcao.

Leaders Barcelona, who play at Real in their Spanish Cup semi-final first leg on Wednesday, are looking to get back to winning ways when they host struggling Osasuna.

Tito Vilanova’s side lost their unbeaten
record and dropped points for only the second time this season when
they suffered a 3-2 defeat at Real Sociedad last weekend but still have
an eight-point lead over Atletico.

Chase: Ronaldo's hat-trick helped Real Madrid close the gap to city rivals Atletico to four points

Chase: Ronaldo's hat-trick helped Real Madrid close the gap to city rivals Atletico to four points

Smile, Jose: Reports this week suggested Iker Casillas and Ramos wanted Jose Mourinho dismissed otherwise they would leave

Smile, Jose: Reports this week suggested Iker Casillas and Ramos wanted Jose Mourinho dismissed otherwise they would leave

Getafe, who beat Real 2-1 at their Coliseum stadium earlier in the season but whose form has dipped in recent weeks, are 11th on 26 points.

Cristiano Ronaldo scores twice as Real Madrid beat Real Sociedad 4-3

Ronaldo brace seals Real win as Mourinho forced into using Casillas after Adan red

By
Joseph Wilson, Associated Press

PUBLISHED:

19:44 GMT, 6 January 2013

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UPDATED:

20:07 GMT, 6 January 2013

Cristiano Ronaldo scored two goals in a three-minute span to give 10-man Real Madrid a 4-3 win over Real Sociedad on Sunday, after coach Jose Mourinho's decision to drop goalkeeper Iker Casillas almost backfired for a second straight game.

Despite heavy criticism after last round's loss, Mourinho again started rarely used Antonio Adan, but the keeper was sent off after giving away an early penalty.

Casillas then came on but couldn't stop Xabi Prieto's resulting spot kick to cancel out Karim Benzema's opener, and it was 2-2 at halftime after Prieto leveled again following Sami Khedira's goal.

At the double: Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring one of his two

At the double: Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring one of his two

Ronaldo scored on the break in the 68th before hitting the winner from a free kick in the 70th. But Prieto wasn't done and scored his hat trick in the 76th to keep the wild shootout in doubt until the final whistle.

Madrid's first victory in three games left it in third place, 13 points behind leader Barcelona and four points behind Atletico Madrid before their games later.

The crowd at Santiago Bernabeu stadium voiced its displeasure with Mourinho's continued benching of Casillas by jeering the coach's name when it was announced before the game and cheering for their beloved star.

Seeing red: Referee Ignacio Iglesias sends off Real Madrid's goalkeeper Adan after six minutes

Seeing red: Referee Ignacio Iglesias sends off Real Madrid's goalkeeper Adan after six minutes

Time for a change: Iker Casillas gets ready to replace Adan after his red card

Time for a change: Iker Casillas gets ready to replace Adan after his red card

Madrid's fans, however, couldn't have asked for a better start just two minutes in when Sociedad's unbalanced defense left Benzema unmarked to receive Khedira's pass and slot beyond the stranded Claudio Bravo.

But Madrid's lead didn't last long when Mourinho's choice in goal again proved misguided.

Adan was overwhelmed last round when he conceded three goals in the loss at Malaga, and he was soon shown to be out of his depths at home as well.

The regular backup made a poor pass that Carlos Vela intercepted, and he then charged out and tackled the Mexico forward in his box.

He shoots, he scores: Ronaldo scores for Real

He shoots, he scores: Ronaldo scores for Real

The referee didn't hesitate to show him a direct red card, creating the dramatic situation of Casillas being called off the bench to defend the penalty try.

The crowd chanted 'Iker! Iker!; as the Spanish international jogged on, but there were no heroics as Prieto coolly stroked in the spot kick to equalize in the ninth.

Despite being short a man, Madrid pressed forward and deservedly went in front in the 35th through Khedira's crafty back-heeled flip to redirect a cross between the posts.
Prieto beat Casillas to restore parity at 2-2 five minutes later when he pounced on a rebound inside the area.

Goal time: Karim Benzema celebrates his goal

Goal time: Karim Benzema celebrates his goal

But Ronaldo gave Madrid control of the match when Benzema stole the ball in midfield and played the Portugal winger behind the defense for him to score.

Ronaldo then earned a free kick on the left corner of the area and blasted the ball over goalkeeper Claudio Bravo for his 16th goal in the league this season.

Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain went on as a substitute for his first action since being sidelined for two months with a leg injury and quickly found the woodwork.

Prieto appeared to give Sociedad a late hope when he shot inside the far post, but Sociedad never threatened again after Daniel Estrada was booked for a second time, leaving the visitors with 10 men for the final 10 minutes.

Wigan to add Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Joel to the side on loan

EXCLUSIVE: Martinez pulls off another coup with loan deal for Atletico Madrid keeper Joel

By
Alex Kay

PUBLISHED:

16:33 GMT, 2 January 2013

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UPDATED:

17:17 GMT, 2 January 2013

Wigan will complete the loan signing of Atletico Madrid goalkeeper Joel in the coming days.

The stopper is currently third choice with the Spanish club and spent time away last season, at La Liga rivals Rayo Vallecano.

The Latics have already added Manchester United forward Angelo Henriquez to their ranks since the transfer window opened on Tuesday, and Joel's arrival will be considered a major coup.

Jumping for joy: Joel is on his way to Wigan on loan from Atletico Madrid

Jumping for joy: Joel is on his way to Wigan on loan from Atletico Madrid

Despite his position in Madrid, the stopper is highly thought of and is expected to step into the No 1 spot when the current incumbent Thibaut Courtois returns to Chelsea.

The Belgian has been in the Spanish capital since the start of the season, impressing to such a level that he is already his country's No 1 aged just 20.

Atletico want to keep hold Courtois but understand that may not be possible as his stock continues to rise.

Petr Cech is injured leaving Ross Turnbull in goal for Chelsea

Cech injury blow leaves Chelsea reliant on Turnbull to keep them in title race

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UPDATED:

16:11 GMT, 31 December 2012

Chelsea have been dealt a huge blow in the title race with goalkeeper Petr Cech sidelined by a groin injury.

Reserve stopper Ross Turnbull stepped in for Cech at half-time during Chelsea's 2-1 victory over Everton at Goodison Park on Saturday.

The Blues are currently unsure how long Cech will be kept out for, with further tests needed to determine the recovery period.

Big blow: Petr Cech (centre) has suffered a groin muscle injury

Big blow: Petr Cech (centre) has suffered a groin muscle injury

Turnbull, who was relatively untroubled during the 45 minutes he played against Everton, is likely to start on Wednesday against Queens Park Rangers.

The 27-year-old's only appearance prior to Sunday this season was in Chelsea's 6-0 victory over Wolves in the Capital One Cup.

Cech said after the game: 'I think it was in 40th minute when I was punching the ball away and when I jumped I felt pain in my right groin.

'I finished the half knowing I would not be able to continue after the break. We will see how serious it is. We will know more after the medical check that I undergo tomorrow.'

Struggle: Ross Turnbull has not made any impact at Stamford Bridge

Struggle: Ross Turnbull has not made any impact at Stamford Bridge

Chelsea's back-up keepers, Turnbull and Henrique Hilario, are unsuitable to replace Cech over a long period of time.

The club have highly-rated Belgian stopper Thibaut Courtois on loan at Atletico Madrid and if Cech's injury proves to be severe they could recall him.

Courtois is likely to fight for the No 1 shirt at Chelsea next season with both Turnbull and Hilario making way.

Radamel Falcao, Chelsea target, to stay at Atletico Madrid until end of season

I'm going nowhere: Chelsea target Falcao to remain in Spain until end of season

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UPDATED:

15:41 GMT, 27 December 2012

Chelsea have been dealt a blow in their pursuit of Atletico Madrid striker Radamel Falcao as he has indicated he wants to remain in Spain until the end of the season.

The 26-year-old Colombian striker is grateful to club president Enrique Cerezo for making him feel valued at the club by showing his determination to keep him.

Roman Abramovich was willing to pay the 48million needed to procure the striker from the Spanish capital but he is enjoying his time at the Estadio Vicente Calderon.

Enlarge

Staying put: Falcao wants to remain in Madrid until the summer

Staying put: Falcao wants to remain in Madrid until the summer

Award: Falcao spent Boxing Day in his native Columbia as he received an Excellent Citizen Award from Colombian Police General Director Jose Leon in Bogota

Award: Falcao spent Boxing Day in his native Columbia as he received an Excellent Citizen Award from Colombian Police General Director Jose Leon in Bogota

Colombian Chief General Jose Leon Riano applauds

Colombia's soccer player Radamel Falcao speaks after being awarded the Excellent Citizen Award

Colombia's soccer player Radamel Falcao smiles after receiving the Excellent Citizen Award

Falcao told reporters: ‘I recognise the great effort Enrique Cerezo has made for me to stay at the club.

‘And thank goodness our sporting results have been positive. We expect that to remain so until the end of the season.’

Difficulties in pursuing Falcao means Chelsea have been considering other options, including Barcelona striker David Villa.

The Blues will try to bring him on loan to Stamford Bridge as manager Rafael Benitez believes he will complement Fernando Torres.

Torres is the only striker Chelsea have left, given that Daniel Sturridge is leaving for 12m to Liverpool.

Going it alone: Torres will be Chelsea's only recognised striker when Sturridge leaves for Liverpool

Going it alone: Torres will be Chelsea's only recognised striker when Sturridge leaves for Liverpool

David Villa is Chelsea loan target

EXCLUSIVE: Chelsea fight to bring in Barca striker Villa on loan in bid to help Torres

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UPDATED:

08:24 GMT, 26 December 2012

Chelsea are preparing to join the dash for Spain and Barcelona striker David Villa as Rafa Benitez seeks firepower to complement Fernando Torres.

Having restored the goal instinct of Torres within a month of taking over from Roberto Di Matteo, Benitez is keen to provide more support and cover for his only established centre forward.

Target: Chelsea want Fernando Torres's compatriot David Villa to move from Barcelona on loan

Target: Chelsea want Fernando Torres's compatriot David Villa to move from Barcelona on loan

Bayer Leverkusen’s versatile young
striker Andre Schurrle remains a serious target but Villa is available,
possibly on a loan deal until the end of the season, which means he
would not interfere with Chelsea’s long-term pursuit of Radamel Falcao.

Benitez accepts it will be difficult
and expensive to prise the Colombia striker Falcao from Atletico Madrid
next month but this swoop — or even a move for Newcastle United’s Demba
Ba — may be more achievable in the summer.

Villa provides an attractive short-term solution for Chelsea. At 31, Spain’s record goalscorer does not
fit their ideal profile for young players with their best years ahead of
them but he is fading from favour at the Nou Camp and knows how to
dovetail with Torres after their years together at international level.

Villa is understood to earn 110,000 a week, which is near the top of the Stamford Bridge pay structure but not out of reach.

He can operate at centre forward if
Torres is unavailable or play from wide either side, giving Benitez a
valuable option in his quest to rotate his support strikers and keep
them fresh.

Arsenal are among other clubs
interested in Villa, who has not started a La Liga game for Barcelona
since mid-November, but the Champions League will not provide any
incentive for the striker because he is already cup-tied in that
competition. However, he would be free to play for Chelsea in the Europa
League.

Support: Villa could play with Torres or replace him up front if he needs a rest

Support: Villa could play with Torres or replace him up front if he needs a rest

Daniel Sturridge’s proposed move to Liverpool means that Chelsea must recruit in January.

The back-up option is to recall
Romelu Lukaku from West Bromwich Albion, although it is widely agreed
that the best thing for the teenager’s continued development is to spend
the rest of the season at the Hawthorns.

Radar: Demba Ba and Bayer Leverkusen's Andre Schurrle are both other options for Rafa Benitez

Radar: Demba Ba and Bayer Leverkusen's Andre Schurrle are both other options for Rafa Benitez

Radar: Demba Ba and Bayer Leverkusen's Andre Schurrle are both other options for Rafa Benitez

Winger Victor Moses played as a
centre forward for the last 23 minutes of the 8-0 romp against Aston
Villa on Sunday but he has been named in the Nigeria squad for the
Africa Cup of Nations. Nigeria have also selected John Mikel Obi and
have asked players to report to a training camp in Portugal on Thursday.

Eden Hazard featured at centre forward
in a disastrous experiment away to Juventus in the Champions League.
Chelsea lost 3-0, a defeat which virtually sealed their fate in the
competition, and Di Matteo was sacked a few hours later.

Didn't work out: Eden Hazard played up front for Chelsea against Juventus

Didn't work out: Eden Hazard played up front for Chelsea against Juventus

Thibaut Courtois is likely to stay at Chelsea next season

Chelsea set to keep Courtois at Stamford Bridge next season… but Barca are sniffing around

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UPDATED:

13:37 GMT, 23 December 2012

Chelsea are intending to keep goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois at Stamford Bridge after his loan spell with Atletico Madrid ends, but they will have to wrestle him away from the lure of Barcelona.

The 20-year old remains in Madrid until the summer and, although his current deal with the Blues expires in 2016, he could earn a big pay rise if he agrees new terms.

He was snapped up for just six million euros (4.9m) from Genk in August 2011 and is now in his second loan spell with Atletico, succeeding David de Gea after his transfer to Manchester United.

Highly rated: Thibaut Courtois has impressed in his displays for Atletico Madrid

Highly rated: Thibaut Courtois has impressed in his displays for Atletico Madrid

The Belgian stopper kept 15 clean sheets over 38 appearances last year and helped Los Rojiblancos to finish fifth in La Liga.

After his impressive year, Courtois requested an extended loan period, which Chelsea agreed to, but his performances have sparked interest from Barcelona.

Chelsea regard him as a long-term successor to Petr Cech and him staying with the club next season could mean both deputies Ross Turnbull and Hilario are off-loaded.