Courtois rejects 'false' Real Madrid links
Thibaut Courtois says claims he has already agreed to join Real Madrid are “totally false” and that he remains very happy at Atletico Madrid.
Spanish radio show El Larguero claimed on Sunday night that the on-loan Chelsea goalkeeper had recently told Colchoneros chief executive Miguel Angel Gil that he had already agreed to join the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu club once his current contract ended in 2016.
That story was picked up by AS, which dedicated its cover on Tuesday to the potential move to Madrid. Inside the paper claimed Chelsea would sell the Belgium international for 30 million euros this summer as boss Jose Mourinho wants funds to strengthen his squad elsewhere.
The player himself told AS that he had not made any agreement with any club about his future.
“It is totally false,” Courtois said. “I have not been able to say anything like that to Miguel Angel Gil, because it is not true. I have no agreement with any club. Everyone knows I have a contract with Chelsea and that I am happy at Atletico.”
Courtois’ father told Belgian outlet La Derniere Heure that the stories seemed to him like an attempt by Madrid to knock Atletico, who are now their closest challengers for this season’s La Liga title.
“It is an attempt to destabilise Atletico,” Thierry Courtois said. “There has been no contact with Real. Our negotiations with Chelsea still have to start. And Chelsea would never let him go that way, when his contract has expired. Thibaut is now focused on the season with Atletico and the Champions League.”
The whole farrago could also be a coordinated attempt by cash-strapped Atletico to pressure Chelsea to drop their price for the 21-year-old. AS reports that more ‘sources’ said that negotiations with Chelsea were ongoing and they were still hopeful Courtois “would play more years” for them.
Another angle to the speculation is Madrid already having two top goalkeepers in club captain Iker Casillas and current La Liga first choice Diego Lopez. Both have been linked with moves away from the Bernabeu in recent months, with Casillas apparently a target of Manchester City, and AC Milan reported to be interested in signing Lopez this summer.