Atletico Madrid have now confirmed the signing of Alvaro Morata on an 18-month loan deal after the Chelsea striker has spent one-and-a-half-year at Stamford Bridge following his move from Real Madrid.
The 26-year-old joined Chelsea in a club-record £57million move from Real Madrid in 2017, but struggled to live up to expectations in England as he could only manage 16 goals in 47 Premier League appearances.
Morata had started just two of Chelsea’s last ten Premier League games, with Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri preferring Eden Hazard in the striking role and Olivier Giroud as his backup.
Morata has now moved to Atletico Madrid on loan, following Gonzalo Higuain’s loan move from Juventus to Chelsea.
On his return to his boyhood club, Morata said: “I’m very happy and proud to be here. I can’t wait to start training, meet my new teammates and play.”
Morata is expected to feature alongside Antoine Griezmann who has scored nine La Liga goals this season.
Former Chelsea striker Diego Costa has endured a particularly disappointing season to date with just one goal to show from 11 La Liga matches, forcing Diego Simeone to opt for another striker.
Atletico Madrid confirmed the signing of Morata as the club wrote on its official Twitter account: “Agreement with @ChelseaFC over the loan of @AlvaroMorata for the remainder of the current season and the next one.”
Chelsea also confirmed the news on the club’s official website, thus: “Alvaro Morata has today joined Atletico Madrid on loan until the end of the 2019/20 season.”
The club wished the Spain international well as it wrote on its official website: “We wish Alvaro the very best of luck for his loan period.”
Chelsea manager Maurizio Sarri had opened up on the reason Morata left the club to join Atletico. Sarri revealed that Morata told him about a month ago that he wanted to leave.
“Morata is potentially a very good player,” Sarri said. “He has the characteristics for playing in my team, but one month ago he said he wanted to play for another team.
“It was very difficult for him to give us 100 per cent because of his mental situation. He is very suitable for my football, but the situation has changed in the last month, so we needed to change.
“In the January market it is very difficult to get a very good striker. Gonzalo was in a situation we could try to get him, so we decided to try.”