Alvaro Morata has spent the best years of his career confusing football fans across the globe with his transfer activity and scoring records, to the point where people question if he’s even a real person.
And while his bizarre CV littered with spells between the two Madrid clubs and Juventus – with a weird yet inevitable spell at Chelsea thrown in there – contributes to him feeling like a fever dream, he is a very real and very valid footballer.
When he’s on it, he can be brilliant. But he seems to be somewhat cursed. Very cursed, in fact.
We’d love to know what he did to p*ss in somebody’s cereal in a past life, because he might be the most unfortunate striker in the history of the game.
Every time you watch the Spaniard, you’re filled with a sense of eternal dread and hopelessness, helping to burden the immense weight that you can almost see on his shoulders while he plods along the front line in search of a goal.
The worst part is, nobody is out to get Alvaro at this point. By all accounts, he seems like a rather lovely and harmless chap who – when on it – is capable of putting the ball in the goal or helping others to do so at very important times. Juventus and Atletico Madrid fans know that all too well.
But they’ll also know just how vacant he can become. How desolate it can be when he’s up top, all alone and seemingly being carried by the wind while he waits for a goal to fall into his lap.
It’s like two completely different versions of himself, and the game clubs play is gambling on which version of Morata they’ll get.
And after Chelsea were burned when they spent an initial £60million on him back in 2017, it feels like no club outside of the strange Juve and Atletico duo will ever go there again.
It feels like quite an unfair assessment of a deeply misunderstood forward, but then little things happen. Stupid little things.
Very costly, stupid, little things, such as him busting a lung to get on the end of a loose ball trickling towards goal for Spain to smash it in and make sure against Norway, only for the goal to be ruled out as he was offside.
Oh Alvaro, mate.
Spain thought they had the lead…but VAR had other ideas ❌
— Viaplay Sports UK (@ViaplaySportsUK) October 15, 2023
It was going in. The ball was going into the net.
Might it have been a foul on Norway goalkeeper Orjan Nyland? Quite possibly, and the goal might’ve been chalked off anyway as a result.
We’ll never know, though, because Morata – so desperate to shake off the cobwebs of uncertainty that cloud him – forgot what the offside rule was, saw a chance he could steal like all great strikers should, and ruined what might’ve been a very valid goal for 1-0.
All the right intentions were there, but the IQ didn’t match. Sometimes he wanders around the field like a lost puppy; here he approached the ball like one let off the lead for the first time, fuelled by treats.
Credit where it’s due, the striker was on his toes and on a loose ball like a whippet – but at completely the wrong time. Read the game Alvaro, please.
The goal and the entire moment is actually quite a fitting summary of Morata’s career so far.
Immensely naturally talented and a lethal poacher when firing on all cylinders, but plagued with horrendous fortunes, flailing confidence and an IQ that has never quite improved, no matter how many times he’s been in a similar situation.
We’ll look back on Morata’s career in a fashion just as confusing as we view it now while he still plays, but one thing you can’t fault is his resilience.
He knows where the goal is and sometimes he gets there in tremendous style – but his feet seem to move faster than his head, and whoever controls his voodoo doll is out to get him.
By Mitch Wilks