There were reports early in the summer about potential interest in Roberto Soldado from La Liga sides, including Atlético Madrid. After a £26M move from Valencia, the striker scored only twice from open play for Tottenham Hotspur. However, Soldado's overall play was much better than his disastrous finishing, and Spurs seem to see their expensive forward as a good bounce-back candidate. The reports of a Soldado transfer died down quickly, and based on preseason, the Spaniard appears to be a likely rotation player in Mauricio Pochettino's system. But now, at least in the Madrid daily MARCA, the reports are back:
Atlético have taken the first step and made it very clear that they cannot afford to sign such a big-money player on a permanent basis. The most feasible option would be a loan deal, a season-long loan which would solve the striker's current situation at Tottenham. He does not figure in the club's plans, he wants to return to Spain and Atlético want to sign him.
This story passes the smell test for me. Roberto Soldado is the sort of buy-low candidate that Diego Simeone has specialized in rejuvenating, a good fit for the space left open after the departure of David Villa. Atlético are a basket case financially, despite their on-field success, and they are highly unlikely to be able to meet Daniel Levy's asking price for a transfer.
So I think it's quite plausible that Atlético Madrid contacted Tottenham about a loan for Soldado. I think it is highly implausible that Daniel Levy's side of this conversation wouldn't have been "No." Possibly, "Hahahahahaha, no."
Giving away Soldado for nothing other than wage relief makes absolutely zero sense. There are no suggestions that Soldado is unhappy at Tottenham or any kind of clubhouse problem for Mauricio Pochettino. I will be surprised if anything more comes of this. So long as Atlético are offering nothing of substance in return, there is no plausible transfer business here.