Spanish media outlet Mundo Deportivo are reporting that Jose Gimenez is seriously considering leaving Atleti this summer in search of a transfer to rivals Real Madrid. Speculation has intensified in recent weeks regarding the centre-back’s future at the club, and it now appears as the saying "there’s no smoke without fire" rings true in this case.
Mundo Deportivo claim that the disappointment of being left out of the starting XI for the Champions League final defeat to Real pushed Gimenez to feeling unappreciated by Atletico.
It’s a little hard to believe that one game would hold such an impact on Gimenez. Though it does represent what would have been the biggest game of his career so far, it’s important to remember that the 21-year-old will most likely have many more chances to play in a match of this caliber.
His performance against Bayern Munich in the second leg, where he gave away a penalty which Thomas Muller fortunately failed to convert and struggled for the majority of the match, was never going to help his chances of appearing in Milan. Instead of complaining at being dropped, Gimenez would be wise to look at the reasons why he wasn’t picked to start, thus allowing himself to improve on his weaknesses.
A sale of Gimenez to Real seems unlikely. If he wished to leave, there would be many suitors with which Atleti would be able to avoid selling him to a domestic rival. Rumours have been around since the season ended that Real would be interested in offloading Raphael Varane to make room for a new centre-back, such as Gimenez.
The saga will prove to be a test as to how far Atletico have progressed in terms of matching the allure of Real and Barcelona. Once seen as a perennial selling club, los Rojiblancos have been keen to change that perception with their purchases of talented players like Antoine Griezmann while being successful in keeping a hold of key contributors in Koke and Diego Godin.