Diego Simeone is desperate for an alternative in attack, and Maxi Gomez has been identified as a replacement for Diego Costa, with the Spaniard set for surgery.
After arriving from Chelsea in January, Costa has been a goal-scoring revelation at the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano, although fitness issues are plaguing the Spanish international at this moment.
Nikola Kalinic has disappointed since his summer arrival from AC Milan, and despite scoring in the Copa del Rey victory over Sant Andreu the Croatian isn't viewed as a suitable alternative.
In recent days Los Rojiblancos have accelerated efforts to identify a potential January signing, and with Costa set to miss three months, Maxi Gomez is in the club's crosshairs.
Celta Vigo have rebuffed several offers from both England and China over the course of the Uruguayan's time with the club, however it remains to be seen just how they respond to a bid from a domestic rival.
Andrea Berta is leading the Madrid club's recruitment drive ahead of the winter window, although it's accepted that there will be several roadblocks to overcome in order to bring Gomez to the Spanish capital.
LaLiga Santander's salary limit is one such problem with Atletico Madrid having already hit their limit of 293 million euros spent on wages.
Unless a player leaves, there can be no incoming signings for Los Colchoneros, although Kalinic and Gelson Martins could both leave after failing to settle.
Gomez has a buy-out clause embedded into his contract, yet with the value of said clause standing at 50 million euros it's unlikely such an offer could be made.
Atleti spent heavily in the summer, despite having a stadium to pay for, and it's understood that Los Rojiblancos would only really be willing to pay around half of the aforementioned clause to secure the signing of Gomez, something Celta Vigo wouldn't be overly enticed by.