A report in Marca on Tuesday says Sime Vrsaljko has informed Atlético Madrid he wants to leave the club in January to move back to Italy. The Croatian wants a move to Napoli, a club that contacted him and pushed hard for him over the summer before Simeone and Atlético convinced him of a move to the capital of Spain.
The issue is that he hasn’t had the desired playing time and is in and out of Simeone’s team with Juanfran remaining the Argentine’s go-to right-back. He has played just 363 minutes in five games across three competitions and has just featured in three LaLiga games.
Vrsaljko has a contract until 2021 but Atlético would obviously look to ensure they made back their €16 million outlay, and more, for the player if he was to leave for the Serie A side. His desire to leave could also give Napoli an advantage in the negotiations.
There is little doubt that Vrsaljko could be the right-back of the future at the Wanda Metropolitano but his injury history, with both longer term problems and niggles, is something that obviously concerns the club and Simeone. Since joining the club, he has suffered one quite serious knee injury that kept him out of over ten games last season and has also suffered hamstring issues along with various other set-backs.