José Luis Caminero was one of Atlético’s finest players in the rich history of the club, but in his new role as sporting director, the 44-year old has yet to impress.
He was appointed at the end of May, but only after Getafe manager Toni Muñoz rejected the job offer as he preferred to stay with los Azulones instead of returning to his boyhood club.
Prior to his appointment at the Vicente Calderón, Caminero had only taken up a position at Valladolid, where he left after admitting the job had “exhausted” him.
El Confidencial journalist Carlos Matallanas reported on Friday that Santiago Llorente has recently been appointed by Atlético to assist Caminero.
Llorente has been in the business for years, working for CD Tenerife, Real Valladolid and Getafe in the past. He will bring experience to the table, something Caminero seems to be severely lacking. Llorente’s appointment would suggest that our sporting director is unable to fulfill his tasks, which is surprising considering the marginal role he has at Atlético.
Like Gregorio Manzano, Caminero and several of our players, Santiago Llorente is represented by Manuel García Quilón, one of Spain’s most influential agents.
Quilón and Portuguese super agent Jorge Mendes are seemingly involved in all of Atleti’s transfer dealings, which begs the question: what exactly is Caminero’s role in our squad’s long term planning?
Arda Turan, Falcao and Sílvio were all brought in at the hands of Mendes, while Adrián, Gabi and Miranda were signed by our previous sporting director, Jesús García Pítarch. Other key players such as Diego and Thibaut Courtois are only temporary additions to the team.
When he started, Caminero must have realised that Atlético is a club run by people whose primary goal is to use the club for their own gain, but Llorente’s appointment raises the question whether the former star player is fit to run the football department of the club.
Is Caminero merely a puppet of the board, used for his handsome looks during player presentations, or can he actually bring something to the table for Atlético?