Given the unique situation of Atlético Madrid’s registration ban, players who can be purchased but remain at their current club until that ban ends are the most valuable, and that is certainly the case with today’s link.
Lautaro Martínez is an Argentinian striker currently playing with Racing Club in his home country. The 19-year-old is still just a prospect, but has performed well at international level, with seven goals in 11 matches for Argentina’s U-20 side. Despite his country’s weak showing at the U-20 World Cup in South Korea earlier this year, he did score two goals against Guinea in a 5-0 rout. And at club level, his success has been equally solid, considering his age. He scored nine goals in 23 appearances, of which he started 16.
This potential transfer was broken by Global Deportivo, a Uruguayan source, which claimed Atlético would finalize a deal in the coming hours (likely days), but the player would remain with Racing for the upcoming season. It’s been reported by several sources that his release clause was €9 million, which is not cheap, but not preposterous for a young player with good potential
In general, this passes the smell test for Atleti. Investing in a young, Argentinian player is a Diego Simeone calling card, especially as it seems the Luciano Vietto era will soon be coming to a close. Much like Vietto, Martínez is not the biggest of players, standing at just 5’7” which, combined with his penchant for penalty-area shots, suggests he would be very much a clinical-finishing prospect.