Atlético Madrid has already seen Onuachu perform live several times and would be charmed.

Atlético Madrid has already seen Onuachu perform live several times and would be charmed. ©  JEFFREY GAENS

Atlético de Madrid is looking for alternatives to the 34-year-old Luis Suárez, the only real striker in the selection of Diego Simeone and, according to the Spanish sports newspaper Marca, would have his eye on Paul Onuachu of Racing Genk. He seemed to make a transfer last summer, but stayed. The crucial question is when a transfer can be discussed for Genk and whether that fits into Atlético’s plans.

Michael Van Damme

Today at 11:54

Paul Onuachu assumed he would make a transfer last summer, but it didn’t come to that. Genk broke his contract last month and extended it for a year, the Nigerian attacker quickly turned the switch. That could well be a golden thing, because Onuachu is off to a stormy start to the season with 9 goals in 9 league games. He also scored twice in Europe.

It is only logical that the interest only fuels. According to the Spanish sports newspaper Marca, Atlético Madrid, second in the Spanish league with as many points as leader Real, has his eye on Onuachu. Yannick Carrasco’s club has come to scout Genk several times.

Atletico Madrid have attacking opulence with Carrasco, Correa, Joao Felix, Griezmann and Suarez, but Atletico sporting director Andrea Berta is still looking for an alternative to Luis Suarez in the point of attack. The Uruguayan is now 34 and actually the only real deep striker with a nose for goals. Atlético brought back Antoine Griezmann last summer, but the Frenchman has not yet scored in eight league matches this season. He’s more of the shadow striker type.

Paul Onuachu would give Diego Simeone an extra option in the point to make the offensive violence around that pay off. The crucial question is when a transfer from Onuachu can be discussed for Genk – not until next summer or this winter? – and whether that fits into Atlético’s plans. The Nigerian of 2m02 has a contract in Limburg until June 2024, while Genk has no financial problems.

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