Lemar on the market: Atletico Madrid willing to sell French forward after he refuses pay cut

 

Big money was required to take the winger to Spain in the summer of 2018, but little return has been seen on that investment
Big money was required to take the winger to Spain in the summer of 2018, but little return has been seen on that investment

Atletico Madrid are open to offers for Thomas Lemar during the summer transfer window, with the Liga giants eager to avoid losing the French forward on a free.

The 26-year-old winger has been in the Spanish capital since making a €72 million (£62m/$76m) move from Monaco in 2018.

His current deal now has just 12 months left to run and Atletico are looking to cash in while they still can.

Why are Atletico looking to sell Lemar?

Balancing the books has become a top priority for the Rojiblancos, with work needing to be done in order to comply with Financial Fair Play regulations.

An agreement is understood to be close for the naming rights to Wanda Metropolitano, which will bring in welcome funds, but sales need to be sanctioned.

Movement on departures will also help free up squad space for further arrivals, with Atletico still in the market for a new right-back and midfield competition for Geoffrey Kondogbia.

Lemar is a saleable asset and one who is now available after turning down the offer of a new contract on reduced terms.

Atletico are aware they are not going to get their money back on the Frenchman, but are looking to make as much as possible as his current contract ticks down towards 2023.

Will selling Lemar prove difficult for Atletico Madrid?

The problem for Atletico, as they attempt to find a buyer for Lemar, is that he is no longer the most appealing option to those in the market for attacking talent. He has recorded just nine goals and 14 assists in 143 games for Rojiblancos.

Lemar is working on a deal worth €7m-a-year (£6m/$7m) with those terms set to provide another stumbling block for any suitors.

Atletico also still have €14m (£12m/$15m) to pay in instalments of the deal that brought Lemar onto their books, meaning they are looking to bring in at least €20m (£17m/$21m) to clear that debt and make a deal worthwhile.

Unfortunately for them, money is tight outside of the big-spending Premier League and few clubs are willing to invest so heavily in a player who has endured serious regression during his time in La Liga.written authority of Goal