Log onto the homepage of AS this morning and you’ll see an article from well known and respected La Liga correspondent Guillem Balague.
The subject of the article is on loan Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois and Balague suggests that the Belgian will be up for grabs at a fee of around the €30 million mark this summer.
Courtois is in a difficult situation because he’s always maintained that he’ll go back to Chelsea only as the number one and not the back up for Petr Cech.
That creates the very realistic possibility that the Blues could lose one of their most talented players and Balague suggests that if someone dangles a carrot that lucrative this summer, Chelsea may well bite.
“If Madrid offer 30 million, they can take him to the Santiago Bernabéu this summer. In summer 2015 – with a year less on his contract – the price would be lower,” writes Balague.
It’s very simple for Jose Mourinho. If he wants to keep Courtois then he needs to take him under his wing this summer and promise the Belgian that he’s going to be number one which means alienating an experienced and key figure in Cech.
If Mourinho isn’t willing to make that sacrifice then Balague suggests that Courtois will stay in Madrid, sparking a battle between the two major clubs in Spain’s capital for his permanent future.
“At the moment, Chelsea are in little doubt: Courtois is to return to London at the end of the season, unless someone pays a considerable sum for him. That’s the escape route for a player whose girlfriend is from Madrid, and who would like to stay,” he adds.
So there you have it, should a side come in with a huge offer this summer and Mourinho hasn’t already nudged Cech towards the exit door then Chelsea will listen.
Ideally, they’d probably prefer another loan deal and potentially a fourth year for the player at Atletico Madrid but Courtois seems to be nearing a point where he wants a definitive decision over his future.