Chelsea have announced the signing of Joao Felix on loan from Atletico Madrid for the remainder of the 2022-23 season.
The Blues are understood to have forked out a loan fee of €11m (£9.8m) to recruit the 23-year-old, and the deal reportedly does not include an option or obligation to buy.
Felix becomes Chelsea’s fourth signing of the January transfer window, following Benoit Badiashile, Andrey Santos and David Datro Fofana to Stamford Bridge.
“Chelsea is one of the great teams in the world and I hope to help the team reach their objectives, so I am very, very happy to be here and very excited to play at Stamford Bridge,” Felix told chelseafc.com after his arrival.
Arsenal and Manchester United were also reported to have been interested in a winter deal for the 23-year-old, but Chelsea’s sporting project is believed to have won him over.
Felix arrived at Atletico for a mammoth £111m in the summer of 2019 after bursting onto the scene with Benfica, and he has amassed 34 goals and 18 assists in 131 appearances for the Rojiblancos in that time.
The striker made 31 La Liga appearances as Diego Simeone’s side won the Spanish top-flight title in the 2020-21 campaign, but he has struggled to earn regular minutes in red and white this season.
Amid reports of a fractious relationship with Simeone, Felix has recorded five goals and three assists from 20 outings in all tournaments this term, starting seven games in La Liga and a further three in the Champions League.
Felix started and played 73 minutes of Atletico’s 1-0 defeat to Barcelona on Sunday, but Antoine Griezmann, Alvaro Morata and Angel Correa have all been preferred for large portions of the campaign.
A 28-cap Portugal international, Felix has scored four goals and provided three assists for his nation, including one goal and two assists in four games at the 2022 World Cup, where A Selecao were knocked out by Morocco in the quarter-finals.