Atletico Madrid to rival Celtic for Brazilian striker Jonathas

The Brazilian has enjoyed an exceptional season in La Liga, catching the eye of Atletico Madrid manager Diego Simeone.

12 goals and 7 assists this season, with a club struggling in the bottom half of La Liga, underlines just how important Jonathas has been for his team this season. Indeed, the Brazilian striker has been directly involved in 57% of the goals scored by Los Ilicitanos.

Superb individual form which hasn't gone unnoticed, and according to Marca, has earned plenty of admiration from Atletico Madrid boss, Diego Simeone, who now looks set to make a move for the influential player.

It is suggested that the power, strength, height and scoring ability of Jonathas, is a reminder to Simeone of what Atletico Madrid have missed, since the departure of Diego Simeone to Chelsea last summer.

Celtic have shown the keenest interest thus far, capable of offering the player something he craves in his footballing career - regular Champions League football.

Whilst there have also been reports linking Monaco with interest, their bid may hinge on qualifying for the elite European competition. Something which as yet, isn't guaranteed for them in Ligue 1.

The current contractual situation of Jonathas, is perhaps the only hurdle for either Celtic or Atletico Madrid to overcome. However, it's not one that's insurmountable, given his circumstances with Elche.

His current loan deal with Elche lasts until June 2016, which includes a €1.7 million clause option, to make his move from Pescara permanent, but it is now impossible for the Spanish side to follow that through, given their precarious financial situation.

This means Jonathas will return to Pescara, who will reportedly be open to offers of around €5 million for the player. A price that Atletico Madrid would consider somewhat of a bargain, for a striker who Simeone would like to have amongst his ranks.

Despite having recently acknowledged the interest of Celtic, the chance of remaining in La Liga, and working with one of the most popular managers in Europe, now seems almost certain to steer the ambitions of Jonathas towards the Vicente Calderon, rather than Celtic Park.

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