London Football News

Morata reckons it was his destiny to join Atletico

Alvaro Morata felt it was his “destiny” to return to boyhood club Atletico Madrid.

The 26-year-old on Monday joined Atletico on an 18-month loan deal from Chelsea.

The Spain striker moved to Stamford Bridge on a five-year contract in July 2017 in a £60million move from Real Madrid, but he was a member of Atletico’s academy.

“My life has taken many detours, but it was destiny that I would arrive here,” Morata told reporters at his presentation on Tuesday, according to

“I’m really proud to be back at this club, it’s my childhood team, I have so many happy memories, it means a lot to be here.”

Despite last playing in Spain for city rivals Real, Morata insisted there was only one destination for him once Atletico’s interest became clear.

He added: “Everything else stopped when Atleti appeared. Everything that has happened before is history, I’m here now and everything appears very beautiful.”

Morata will have two years left on his Chelsea deal by the end of the 2019-20 season, when the loan ends, but it is unlikely he will play for the Blues again.

His departure after 18 months, featuring 24 goals in 72 appearances, 24 of them as a substitute, had been telegraphed for some time and Gonzalo Higuain’s arrival on loan last week effectively sealed his move.

Morata was signed by Chelsea as Diego Costa’s replacement – now the 26-year-old has followed Costa to the Wanda Metropolitano.

Arguably Morata’s best performance for the Blues came at Atletico, weeks into his first season and the day after Costa’s return to Madrid had been finalised.

Morata was asked about being a rival to Costa for a place in Diego Simeone’s team.

“Diego, aside from being a team-mate, is a great player, I consider him a friend,” he added.

“It’s always easy to play with great players. I now need to show what I can do on the pitch, that’s where I have to do my talking.”