Atlético won against Espanyol and added three important points in a game that was uphill. The meeting also marked the debut of João Félix this season, since the Portuguese had not been able to play the first three days because he was injured. The forward came in in the 59th minute and gave the team another air. He was seen to be eager, participative, in contact with the ball … The João Félix that all Atlético fans want to see.
João Félix is the other side of the game. Griezmann starred in the most gray, who went unnoticed in the meeting. The French had no influence on the game. The Portuguese, yes, won the first round. João Félix gave 10 good passes out of 13 that he tried. He had a 76.9 percent success rate and eight of those passes were made in the rival field. In addition, he was seen very intense, with character. He caused three fouls. Of seven duels he won 71.4 percent.
This is how Simeone wants him, who has praised the Portuguese every time he had to talk about him in this start of season. The coaching staff's faith in João Félix is total, although the signing of Griezmann could eclipse him. But the Argentine coach knows that he has many games, that the team must face LaLiga, Copa, Champions and Super Cup of Spain and needs the entire squad. The first time Cholo had to turn to João Félix, he responded.
The forward faces his third season at Atlético. In the first two he complied. It did not dazzle. Last season it started very well, but after Christmas it faded away. Then his right ankle problems greatly impaired his performance. To the point that he had to operate at the end of the Eurocup. The intention of the forward was to be able to start the championship, but nobody wants to force his recovery in the least.
At 21 years old, and with a contract until 2026, he has a market value of 80 million. Atlético always said no to the clubs that knocked on their door asking about their future. Barcelona was the last to try, but neither Simeone nor his coaching staff nor the leaders want him to leave. Quite the opposite. There is João Félix for a long time. Now comes the Champions League and Atlético faces Porto, a very special match for the rojiblanco.
João, wedge of Porto wood
The forward came to Atlético from Benfica in 2019, but in reality where he has spent the most time in his still incipient career is in Porto. There he was seven years, since he entered 2008 (with eight) until he left in 2015, after playing a year at Padroense. At that moment, João and his father understood that it was time for a change of scene, because in Porto he did not see himself with the opportunities he wanted. The reason given was João's physical fragility. The club of dragons, in fact, he has insisted that it was the footballer who decided to leave, not the entity, before what the fans understood as a historical error. He went to Benfica and exploded. The minor consolation for Porto is that he fished just over a million euros for training rights when João jumped to Atleti.
And João Félix, in fact, already faced Porto on one occasion in the Portuguese championship. It was March 2, 2019. Benfica won 1-2 in the fiefdom of their rival and the Atlético striker scored a goal. The Porto center-back pair consisted of Felipe, now his teammate at Atlético, and Pepe. He also played another official match against Porto, this time in the Allianz Cup (League Cup), although this time with defeat. You already know what it is to face Porto. The rivalry between Porto and Benfica is maximum and the forward is eager to relive the games he already played in Portugal.