Stamford Bridge told to stump up big for number one target.
Atletico Madrid will reportedly demand Chelsea hand them keeper Thibaut Courtois as part of any deal that would see star striker Radamel Falcao leave the Vicente Calderon in January.
The young Belgian keeper is in his second season long loan spell at the La Liga side and has made a big impression and Atletico Madrid will stress that the 20 year old remains at the Spanish club on top of a fee thought to be in the region of £48m for the Colombian hot-shot.
Falcao has been at the top of Chelsea’s wish-list long before the 26 year old struck a superb hat-trick against the Blues in the European Super Cup Final this summer and Atletico are more than aware that any hope of keeping hold of the striker has been extinguished by the club’s desire to balance the books and help use funds from his sale to bring in a selection of players who can help in the club’s pursuit of a crucial Champions League berth.
Courtois joined Chelsea in the summer of 2011 but is still yet to play a single senior game for the Premier League side. Last term the giant Belgian had a superb season at Atletico Madrid, playing 52 games in all competitions, keeping 23 clean sheets and helping his side to a Europa League triumph.
Chelsea boss Roberto Di Matteo opted to loan out the Belgian international again this term and once again he has proved unflappable between the sticks, helping Diego Simeone’s side to a near flawless start to the season.
30 year old Petr Cech is still relatively young in goalkeeping terms so perhaps the loss of Courtois as part of a deal to secure Falcao is an acceptable price to pay to improve the club’s attacking options.
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