Benfica 'open talks to re-sign Joao Felix from Atletico Madrid for £12.7m' - less than a TENTH of what they sold him for five years ago - but there is one major problem standing in their way

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  • Benfica reportedly want Joao Felix back from Atletico Madrid for a slashed price 
  • His five seasons since 2019 have showed much promise and inconsistency 
  • LISTEN to It's All Kicking Off! EUROS DAILY: Why Gareth Southgate should wield the axe for Switzerland quarter-final 

Benfica have reportedly opened talks with Atletico Madrid about a shock deal to take back Joao Felix five years after they sold him - for a slither of the price. 

Felix became the fourth-most expensive player in history in July 2019 when Benfica sold him to Atletico for £114million.

Five seasons, two loan spells, and one huge fall-out with Atletico boss Diego Simeone later, and Benfica want him back for a relatively piddling £12.7m. 

That's according to Spanish outlet Sport, who report that Atletico are holding out for a fee above £21m. 

As part of the deal, Benfica would purchase 50 per cent of the player's rights, meaning Atletico would be entitled to half of the future fee if they sell him on. 

Benfica are reportedly trying to re-sign Joao Felix from Atletico Madrid for £12.7million

Benfica are reportedly trying to re-sign Joao Felix from Atletico Madrid for £12.7million

Benfica are reportedly trying to re-sign Joao Felix from Atletico Madrid for £12.7million

The Portuguese giants sold Felix to Atletico in 2019 for £114m, the fourth-highest fee ever

The Portuguese giants sold Felix to Atletico in 2019 for £114m, the fourth-highest fee ever

Felix has struggled to leave a positive impression at Atletico and has been sent on loan twice

Felix has struggled to leave a positive impression at Atletico and has been sent on loan twice

The prime issue for Benfica is his £6.7m per year salary, which would make him their third-highest earner after Angel Di Maria and Juan Bernat, according to Capology

Selling defender Antonio Silva, 20, would help. Manchester United, Chelsea, and Newcastle have all been linked with the centre-back, whose wayward pass led to Khvicha Kvaratskhelia's opening goal in the 2-0 defeat by Georgia last week. 

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Atletico would likely desire a higher fee considering the sum they forked out for him but it is the best proposal they have had for some time, Sport reports. 

Felix, no doubt an immense talent, has been marred by inconsistency and a quarrel with Simeone in his five years on Atletico's books. 

In 2022-23 he went on an unfruitful loan to Chelsea and he was at Barcelona last season, where he eventually fared a bit better.

It was not always a smooth ride but Felix eventually ended up on 10 goals and six assists, a respectable haul.

Barcelona were hoping to keep hold of him and fellow loanee Joao Cancelo.

'We want them to continue. Deco is working to ensure that they continue another season in the current conditions,' club chief Joan Laporta said on the President's Podcast on Barca One.

Manager Diego Simeone has not been impressed with his attitude and even banished him to train with the academy last summer

Manager Diego Simeone has not been impressed with his attitude and even banished him to train with the academy last summer

The 24-year-old had slightly better form at Barca this season but blew hot and cold

The 24-year-old had slightly better form at Barca this season but blew hot and cold 

'[Hansi] Flick considers that they are high-quality players and when he coached Bayern he already tried to incorporate Joao Felix. I think that Felix could have performed better because he has extraordinary quality.'

Fabrizio Romano tweeted that Barca informed agent Jorge Mendes of their intention to keep the two players.

He added: 'Laporta and Deco agree on the plan, Hansi Flick already gave his green light. Concrete talks with Atletico and Man City are yet to start but both players want to stay.' 

However, Barcelona's financial restrictions mean they would face a challenge to fund keeping both permanently. 

At Atletico, Simeone has never been much of a fan of Felix's attitude on and of the ball. 

Last summer he was spotted training with Atletico's youth team and the two have been frosty when given the chance to publicly discuss each other. 

So far at Euro 2024, he has played once for Portugal: in the loss to Georgia.

WE'RE BACKING ENGLAND! MAIL SPORT LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN IN SUPPORT OF THREE LIONS 

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