Atletico facing Courtois conundrum

April 10, 2014
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Atletico Madrid have confirmed that loan goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois is highly unlikely to feature if they are paired with Chelsea in the semi-finals of the Champions League.

Belgium international Courtois is currently in his third successive season on loan at the Vicente Calderon and has been a key figure in the club's successful season to date.

Atleti currently top La Liga and defeated Spanish rivals Barcelona 2-1 on aggregate to reach the last four in the Champions League, however they may have to cope without Courtois if they draw the Blues.

Atletico president Enrique Cerezo told Spanish radio station Onda Cero: "The problem is whether Courtois can play if we get Chelsea in the draw.

"There is something in the contract. For him to play we would have to pay a large quantity of money, a figure we cannot pay."

If Courtois is forced to miss out, Atleti will be forced to turn to former Athletic Bilbao and Deportivo La Coruna keeper Daniel Aranzubia, who has only featured on two occasions so far this season.

He was booked in a 2-0 Champions League win over FC Porto and then sent off in a 2-0 league defeat at Almeria in early February.

Meanwhile, holders Bayern Munich and Real Madrid are the other two teams left in the Champions League, with Atletico the only club still in the competition who have yet to be crowned European champions.

They lost out in the 1974 final to Bayern, being beaten 4-0 in a replay after the first meeting in Brussels ended in a 1-1 draw after extra-time.

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