Not for the first time this month, there seems to be a growing interest in Koke of Atletico Madrid coming from Manchester United, who will surely be adding a player this January according to pretty much everyone.
The 21-year old, already appearing five times for the Spanish national team, has scored 3 goals and has added 9 assists this season for Atletico, providing the creative power behind Diego Costa, having a monstrous season himself with 19 league goals so far.
According to reports in Spain, he has a release clause of €24 million. However, according to El Confidencial, Atletico Madrid are asking for €60 million, and clearly are showing no intention of letting go of one of their best players while they’re trying to win a championship and have a very good chance of advancing to the quarterfinals of the Champions League, drawn against the troubled AC Milan.
How does the money thing work? Think about the summer and Manchester United trying to sign Ander Herrera from Athletic Bilbao. They did put up the amount necessary to trigger his release clause, but Bilbao simply blocked their bank account and refused to accept the money. If Manchester United had done their homework properly, they would have known that Bayern Munich had a similar problem a year ago when trying to sign Javi Martinez. They simply contacted the Bilbao city council, which has loaned out plenty of funds to the football club, and pressured them to force Athletic to accept the transfer money.
Koke, an attacking midfielder who can also play on the right wing, is probably designated to take over for the disappointing Antonio Valencia, who might be better when it comes to helping on defensively, but Manchester United are often missing something creative in their midfield.