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Official: Álvaro Morata joins Atlético Madrid from Chelsea

Thanks for everything!

Ask, and you shall receive.

Atlético Madrid, who have been the epicentre of business at the beginning of this summer transfer window, made yet another move in the market. This time, they answered Chelsea’s gambit by turning Álvaro Morata’s loan deal with the Colchoneros into a permanent switch that will be completed at the beginning of next season.

Morata’s loan deal included a €55 million buying option, and given the speed in which an agreement for his transfer was reached, it is very possible that Atlético simply matched the clause. Therefore, along with the reported €3 million loan fee paid at the beginning of his then temporary move to Atlético, Chelsea might have recovered a huge chunk of the €67 million paid by them to take Morata from Real Madrid two years ago.

The Spaniard arrived at Stamford Bridge in July 2017, in a summer where we seemed all but set to reunite with former Chelsea striker Romelu Lukaku — before he (and his agent) decided to take the road to Manchester United instead. He was an immediate success at Stamford Bridge under head coach Antonio Conte, scoring 12 goals in his first half-season at the club. However, his goalscoring form dwindled from that point on, largely thanks to a back injury that hit him in January last year.

In his second season at Stamford Bridge, his chances started to diminish as new manager Maurizio Sarri opted to utilise Eden Hazard and Olivier Giroud in his position. He left Chelsea for Atlético in the winter transfer window, with 24 goals scored in 72 matches for the club.

He arrived at Chelsea as a man wanting to fulfil the (huge) promise he carried from his days as a Real Madrid prospect, and then as a Juventus project. Whereas his first outings showed clear signs that he had all the technical and physical tools to become a top striker, he eventually met the struggles of previous seasons that kept him from realising his full potential. Now at Atlético, where he clearly feels happy again, he hopes he can finally reach the heights he was set for.

Good luck, Morata! We all wish you well in this new journey of yours.

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