Atletico Madrid rule out winger sale before Friday

Atletico Madrid

Atletico Madrid have confirmed Thomas Lemar will not be leaving the club in the January window despite all the reported interest in him.

The 24-year-old winger has had a tough time of it since arriving at the club from Monaco for a fee of £60million back in 2018, and a move looked to be on the cards.

It has been claimed that boss Diego Simeone would be happy to let him move on, with a number of clubs including Bayern Munich, Arsenal and Chelsea all said to be keen.

However, Atletico chief executive Gil Marin has ruled out the possibility of Lemar leaving in this window, which has just a few days left to run.

“Lemar is not for sale,” he said. “There is no way he can change.”

It would not be the first time a club have said a player is not for sale only for him to leave soon after, but Atleti seem determined to keep hold of him at least until the summer.

The France international has only made 10 starts this season and has yet to score a goal or provide and assist.

Simeone has been critical of his performances and will expect a lot more from the player when he returns from the hamstring injury that has sidelined him since December.

“Facts speak better than words. Lemar is an important player who hasn’t been able to develop his game but who has characteristics that others don’t have,” Simeone said. “Let’s hope he has a good moment when he comes back from injury.”