Despite Juventus’ long-term interest in Barca’s third highest goal-scoring ace Luis Suarez, it now appears that Athletico Madrid could well be the next destination for the disgruntled Uruguayan striker as El Pistolero is reported to have finally sealed his acrimonious exit from Barcelona after reportedly agreeing a termination of his contract, according to Spanish outlet RAC.
The much-anticipated departure of Messi’s partner in goal-scoring crimes will now lead to Atletico shifting their plans on former Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata, who is now expected to return to Juventus on loan.
It had been widely expected that Suarez would be making the move to Juventus after new Barca boss Ronald Koeman made it clear that he did not have a place for El Pistolero in his plans to rebuild the Barca squad.
With Juve unable to bring in any more non-EU players in this transfer window following the arrivals of Arthur Melo and Weston McKennie, Suarez had earlier passed an Italian exam in Perugia last week in order to acquire dual nationality, and the 33-year-old was facing a purportedly long and anxious wait for a passport to be approved ahead of the transfer window closing on October 5, with new Juve boss Andrea Pirlo admitting over the weekend that the transfer would be ‘difficult’.
Italian outlet Gazzette dello Sport quotes the new Juventus boss, saying:
‘Suarez is difficult because the times to get a passport are long, it is complicated that [our new striker] can be him.’
Athletico boss Diego Simeone is looking to pair Suarez with Diego Costa up front in the squad’s lineup, with Suarez’s anticipated move seeing Morata head for new pastures once more.
The Spaniard spent two seasons at Juve between 2014 and 2016 and was part of the side that reached the Champions League final in 2015.