Atletico Madrid fans are likely exhausted by the narrative of a rocky relationship between Diego Simeone and Joao Felix, yet once again this season, the two are not seeing eye to eye.
Simeone selected Felix from the start for the first five matches in a row this season. The Portuguese had started well after a hat-trick of assists against Getafe on the opening day, but in the ten games since, he is yet to directly contribute to a goal. The performances have not been much better either.
For the last three matches, Joao Felix has been dropped from the line-up. The Portuguese has been sat for similar runs towards the end of the 2020-21 season and during December of last season. In terms of minutes though, 29 in total, this is his worst three-game run (while fit) since joining Los Colchoneros.
On Saturday, Simeone seemed to send a pointed message to Felix, speaking about Angel Correa’s excellent attitude. Worse still, when Felix has come on against Sevilla, Club Brugge and Girona, his own approach has not been the hard-working and collective outlook Simeone likes.
Once again, Atletico Madrid are watching their most expensive asset and their best-paid one fail to work out a productive relationship. While, as last season showed, it is not beyond recovery, many fans will be asking why it is happening again.