Chelsea Striker Alvaro Morata Admits Feeling Pressure of £70m Move - 'They're Already Killing Me'
Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata appears to be already feeling the mounting pressure on his shoulders after joining the club from Real Madrid. The fee, which could rise to £70m in time, is a significant burden and he's felt a bit of a backlash in the first few weeks.
"I admit [the fee is] a very important amount, but I have personality to play quietly and go about my work," Morata told Spanish outlet Marca.
"I have only played two pre-season games, 15 official minutes and a missed penalty [in the Community Shield], and they're already killing me, so I know what's ahead," he added.
The demands are certainly not a surprise for Morata, though, given the nature of his transfer and he's looking to use the pressure and expectation to help him thrive.
"It is the price that must be paid for such a large transfer. And it's something that motivates me and makes me work harder every day, to spend an hour every day in training. I know twice as many people look at me now," he explained.
"The day I signed I had to go around the world, from Los Angeles to Singapore; Then I went to London and I trained. Now I have to adapt to a new team with a very tactical Italian coach, with many changes. But I'm already adapted and I really want to play."
Although Diego Costa is still technically a Chelsea player for now, Morata has arrived to replace his unsettled international colleague and some view it as a risk for the club.
Premier League pundit Jamie Redknapp told the Daily Mail, "Exiling Costa and bringing in Alvaro Morata is one of the biggest trades I can remember in the Premier League. Nobody really knows how Morata is. It could go wrong quite quickly."
Ex-Chelsea striker Hernan Crespo has been kind about Morata's qualities, noting that the 24-year-old and Costa are very different types of forward.
"Diego Costa plays in the middle, he wants to fight behind the defenders, in the middle of the defenders and fight and fight," the Argentine told the Daily Mirror. "Morata is different, maybe wants to start the action, he predicts to play on the left and not stay in the middle. I think it’s another kind of player but at the same time are two great scorers."
Yet Crespo views Romelu Lukaku, Chelsea's first choice ahead of Morata before losing out to Manchester United, as the 'best signing' of the summer so far.
"If I was a Premier League manager and had to choose between Lukaku, Morata and [Alexandre] Lacazette, I would choose Lukaku, always," he said.