Ever since Tiago went down with a broken leg on Nov. 28, Atlético Madrid have been linked with a host of central midfielders. Diego Simeone's pensive words on flashing some cash to cover for the Portuguese in his absence only added fuel to the rumor mill's fire.
Monaco's Jérémy Toulalan has been mooted as a potential replacement for Tiago, as has Celta Vigo captain Augusto Fernández. Yesterday, a report in Marca indicated that the 29-year-old Fernández - who even has Diego Godín talking - is now the Chosen One, but there is no rush to get a deal done as the January transfer window opens. The reason: Atlético have won five straight since Tiago broke his leg, and good feelings abound due to Saúl Ñíguez's form, Thomas Partey's emergence as a capable deputy and the impending arrival of River Plate ace Matías Kranevitter following the Club World Cup.
On Saturday, a Mundo Deportivo report citing A Coruña-based newspaper La Voz de Galicia emerged and claimed that Atlético were monitoring Deportivo midfielder Pedro Mosquera ahead of a January bid:
Sources close to him [Mosquera] and the Galician club itself confirm that the player is being followed by Atlético Madrid...The former Real Madrid academy man has a contract through 2019. Mosquera has a low termination clause and could be a cheaper option for Atlético.
Both the Marca and MD reports say that Atleti will wait to see how Kranevitter adapts and if Saúl's sizzling form continues before coming to a final decision.
Mosquera has been one of the driving forces in Deportivo's surprising revival. Buoyed by new manager Victor Sánchez and La Liga's very own version of Jamie Vardy, Depor sit sixth in the table after 15 rounds and have lost only twice while recording La Liga's fourth-best goal difference. Mosquera is averaging better than four tackles and two clearances per 90 minutes and has helped to solidify a midfield which had questions surrounding its defensive capabilities.
The 27-year-old would be an intriguing option in January, but like Fernández and Celta, Deportivo find themselves hanging on in the race for European football and would be loath to lose an important contributor in the winter window. Remember, it's possible Atlético don't sign anyone next month and elect to move forward with Saúl and some combination of Kranevitter and Thomas. There's no rush at the Calderón considering the team's current form, but stay tuned.