Right player, wrong place, wrong time

If that is the final time Joao Felix He walked off the sphere on the Metropolitano, at the very least he did to start with, scored a objective, man of the match, and applauded all the way in which. This wasn’t all the time the case, and getting a response like this wasn’t all the time the case both. After forty-nine days, La Liga is again. For the Portugal worldwide, it was solely pure to marvel if it was only for one evening, and there was no certainty that after 3 and a half years right here he would get an honest send-off, ought to it turn into one. Neither is there any certainty {that a} evening like this, the one he is presupposed to spend, will change something both.

“What occurs will occur,” mentioned Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone.

Typically that is not true – a number of occasions what ought to occur is not what occurs in any respect – however what ought to occur, it appears now, is for the previous Benfica prodigy to go away Spain and head to, properly, nearly wherever that could be for him. Anyplace however right here. That is what Atletico’s proprietor and CEO says, at the very least, and the actual fact he mentioned it makes it all of the extra possible. On December 6, it was not an open secret in any respect: with the second section of the World Cup underway in Qatar, Miguel Angel Gil Marin was additionally there, publicly admitting that if there was an opportunity for Joao Félix to go away Atlético then he would “at the very least analyze it”. “.

at the very least.

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“Joao Felix is ​​the most important ‘guess’ this membership has made in its historical past,” mentioned Gil Marin. “Personally, I feel he has world-class expertise, each as a participant and as an individual, however it’s true that for causes not price getting into now, the connection between the coach and him, the minutes he performed and his motives are proper now make us consider that the affordable factor to do is that if possibility seems for him and the membership, We must always at the very least analyze him. Personally, I would really like him to proceed, however I feel now the participant has different concepts.”

And there it was. In a single line, Gil Marin has publicly put Joao Felix in the marketplace and blamed – how beneficially – the participant and the supervisor relatively than any of the opposite components in play, these concerned in signing him for €126m in 2019, or his difficulties in justifying that price. since then. Actually, not solely did Gil Marin put Joao Felix in the marketplace, you’ll be able to’t assist however marvel if he really agreed to a deal. Apart from that, it doesn’t appear to be essentially the most affordable negotiating model, more likely to cut back Joao Felix’s worth and weaken Atletico’s negotiating place.

The reality is that up to now Atletico say they haven’t made an precise provide for him. Whereas this is not a dramatic assertion, it’d sound like this: It could have been three weeks since Jill Marin’s feedback, however it’s not even January but, the market hasn’t opened but. Besides, they’ve hinted that they’d be open to a mortgage provide, at the very least within the brief time period. And sure, take a step again, it is a mortgage deal for a participant whose switch price was extra – nearly twice – than anybody else of their total historical past. Solely two gamers have charged larger charges, each at PSG.

Paying a €126m switch price for an adolescent was all the time a excessive worth, however the plan implicit within the deal was to promote, as soon as his worth had grown, a promise made by Jorge Mendes, an agent with whom Atlético was very shut. At this worth and this age, it appeared dangerous; It’s merely not the case now. Which implies that simply as Atletico overtly admit they wish to get out of the deal and Joao Félix want to get out of it, everyone seems to be compelled to confront the chance that that’s not potential. And now that we have come this far, that looks like a worse prospect than our farewell. (Or so that they suppose: it is tempting to marvel if getting caught is basically one of the best factor that might occur to them.)

His passing can be good for everybody, that is how dangerous it’s. A participant who does not like his coach, a coach who does not appear to love his participant very a lot, a membership who prefers to chop his losses, an agent who desires to extend his income, if not the way in which he ought to, and the followers marvel why all that is and whether or not they like him or not, and if They need to have mourned his passing.

They’re left with a way of… not precisely a loss, simply extra, properly, form of not a lot. That awkward feeling of 4 years which might be a bit empty, that nothing has actually been achieved, that there isn’t a actual hint left. A sense that, actually, is probably not fully truthful however unavoidable. It could not have been – what it is perhaps for another golf equipment – however it actually wasn’t. If they’ve to recollect Joao Felix, it could be good in the event that they keep in mind him like Thursday evening when he scored, performed nice, did issues others could not, left exhausted after giving the whole lot, and the place applauds him as he goes.

The truth that he performed that approach made it higher and it additionally made it worse. They knew exhibits like this might occur, however it did not occur typically. Expectation circumstances the whole lot, which it all the time does. Context works as properly, widening the scope of blame, and the division over the place accountability lies. It is exhausting to keep away from feeling that possibly, simply possibly, Joao Felix was the appropriate participant within the incorrect place on the incorrect time, to keep away from clinging to the hope that possibly, simply possibly, he might in the future be the appropriate place. It is also exhausting to keep away from questioning if it is actually that good.

Now, many are taking a look at him and considering that one of the best case state of affairs for Atlético relies upon not a lot on him however on how a lot cash they’ll make on his switch and who they’ll get to exchange him. It appears to have come this far like a pity, a waste. And possibly not fully needed, although it appears oddly deterministic, too.

Joao Félix joined Atlético at simply 19 years outdated and has solely made 26 appearances within the first division. It should not have value that a lot cash, and that is the unique sin. However there was clearly one thing particular there: there have been 15 targets in that interval, plus 9 assists, plus three targets and an help within the Europa League. He was totally different, horny, gifted. Typically he was in Spain. His stats are actually good: 4 targets and 4 assists in LaLiga up to now this season, eight targets and 4 assists final season, seven targets and 6 assists the earlier season, six targets and one help the earlier season – his first targets in Spain. .

When Atlético received the league within the 2020-21 season, by the midway level (or at the very least round November, after they had been unbeaten) there was an argument that he might need been one of the best participant in Spain. He began the season with three assists in a single sport. Nevertheless, with Atlético out of Europe, he was not within the squad. Once they went to Portugal to play the ultimate levels of the Champions League within the Covid-affected 2019-20 season, he didn’t play.

Luis SuarezTheir arrival modified the way in which they performed, bringing Atlético nearer to the opposition space. That made Joao Felix a central piece within the early months of their title-winning season, a interval when it regarded like he could lead on a shift in identification, and their transfer in direction of another person, somebody good.

There was a second in that season when… Saul And the Jan Oblak The digital camera was caught dousing him. “When he desires to, he can change the sport, man.” That was the road and it was real admiration, nearly awe, however it got here with a form of reproach: when he desires. That was two years in the past now, possibly that was in a nutshell, even when the whole lot was tremendous. By some means, it by no means felt proper, or at the very least not lengthy sufficient, as if he hadn’t accomplished sufficient to slot in and never accomplished sufficient to make him match – everybody’s fault and no one’s.

And in Qatar, Joao Felix admitted that issues look totally different within the nationwide crew “the way in which of enjoying and happiness”. In equity, there was nothing else he might actually say, as soon as he put it on the spot, however he additionally left a touch of one thing that did not exist in Spain and that was already accepted by everybody. When requested about Joao Félix’s efficiency within the World Cup, Simeone replied that this was “an ideal competitors for him: in brief, the place magnificence is seen, the place gamers like him are liked”. As compliments go, he might hardly have been disingenuous, mentioned the accusation of not being dedicated or constant along with his membership, with out having to say so.

Even now it is simple to suppose: what if Simeone strikes? Perhaps then Joao Felix might star? There’s part of you that is considering: If nobody comes for it, possibly that is the catalyst for the explosion? That a part of you that is aware of continues to be solely 23 years outdated.

There was a component of it on Thursday when Atlético’s Twitter account posted an image of him. The headline learn, “Our quantity is 7.” However that is season 4, and few count on it to be their seventh for for much longer; Nonetheless fewer are keen to combat for it anymore. Battle now appears to be making an attempt to benefit from it.

There is probably not a lot unhappiness when he is gone, which might be the saddest factor of all. On Thursday, beginning after seven straight video games as a sub and in addition scoring for the fourth sport in a row, there was a glimpse of the expertise, however few had been not hanging on. At the least the farewell, if that is what it was, was tremendous. Some feared good luck as a substitute: whistles, boos, supporters handing out a responsible verdict. Nevertheless, the time for reconciliation additionally appeared to be over, no going again now, only a form of candy remorse. When the followers applauded him from the stadium, there was a sense: properly, that wasn’t the case.

Requested if this would possibly change issues, Simeone mentioned: “I take into consideration the gamers who’re right here with me. I give the whole lot and push them till the final minute. I attempt to do what’s finest for the membership. After which what has to occur will occur – and it does not depend upon me.” “.

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