Atletico Madrid in talks to sign Alvaro Morata from Chelsea

Chelsea want permanent transfer, two years after paying £70m for Morata; Maurizio Sarri wants to bring in Gonzalo Higuain as replacement striker

Alvaro Morata celebrates putting Chelsea 1-0 up
Image: Atletico Madrid are in talks to sign Alvaro Morata

Atletico Madrid are in talks to sign Alvaro Morata from Chelsea.

Chelsea would prefer a permanent deal, with the club eager to recoup as much of their investment back as possible, having signed Morata for a club-record £70m from Real Madrid less than two years ago.

The club also need a replacement for him and head coach Maurizio Sarri wants Gonzalo Higuain, who played for him at Napoli and is currently on loan at AC Milan from Juventus.

Chelsea are also weighing up a move for Bournemouth striker Callum Wilson, though the England international is interesting West Ham, who may need a replacement for Marko Arnautovic.

Alvaro Morata has only scored two Premier League goals since January
Image: Morata has scored five Premier League goals this season

Morata was not even on the substitutes' bench for Chelsea's 2-1 win over Newcastle on Saturday and was pictured in Madrid on Monday.

He has been linked with a Stamford Bridge exit after losing his place as Chelsea's first-choice striker, with Sarri preferring to utilise Eden Hazard as his main point of reference in attack.

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The Guardian's Dominic Fifield thinks the recruitment policy at Chelsea is muddled and feels there is a lack of long-term planning within the current hierarchy

Morata has been linked with both Sevilla and Barcelona in recent weeks but Atletico - the club where he began his youth career - now look like frontrunners for his signature.

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Chelsea sold Diego Costa back to Atletico just three months after signing Morata.

But Costa has struggled to stay fit this season and has scored just one goal in 11 La Liga matches, prompting Atletico to look for another attacking option to complement Antoine Griezmann.

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