Atletico Madrid Want Chelsea Keeper on Permanent Deal – Report
By Adrian Back | February 5, 2013 9:34 PM EST
Chelsea will have a fight on their hands to keep hold of exciting young goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois as Atletico Madrid hope to convince him to make the move to Spain on a permanent basis.
The Belgian keeper is in the middle of his second season at the Vicente Calderon after agreeing consecutive season-long loan deals from Chelsea.
He has become somewhat of a cult hero among Atletico fans as his string of fine performances have helped the club achieve massive success.
Last season they won the Europa League, with Courtois making 15 appearances in the competition, while this year he has kept 10 clean sheets in his 19 league appearances to help the club climb to second in the league, seven points clear of their biggest rivals Real Madrid.
The 20-year-old is firmly established as the number one under Diego Simeone and there is a growing feeling that he would not want to return to Chelsea in order to be an understudy to Petr Cech.
The Daily Mail believes that Atletico are seeking to make his move a permanent one and will approach Chelsea before the end of the season to try and conclude a deal.
Chelsea would certainly not want to lose Courtois as they are aware that he is quickly becoming regarded as one of the best young goalkeepers in European football.
Having signed him from Genk just over 18 months ago, Chelsea believed they were recruiting a ready-made replacement for Cech. However, they did not believe that he would progress so quickly as he is seemingly ready to battle for the number one shirt.
The problem for the west London club is that Cech has also been in superb form and there are few signs to indicate that he will not be able to keep performing at the highest level for many years to come.
With Courtois having enjoyed success as first choice in Spain, there is a growing concern that he will want assurances of regular football at Chelsea before deciding on his future.
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