Morata can handle Atletico jeers, says Chelsea No.1 Courtois as Blues head to Madrid for Champions League

Thibaut Courtois has acknowledged that Alvaro Morata could be in for a rough ride when Chelsea go to Atletico Madrid for a Champions League clash.

Hat-trick hero Morata, who snatched a treble in the 4-0 Premier League win at Stoke on Saturday, goes back to the Spaniash capital where he plied his trade for cross-city rivals Real before he joined the Blues.

And Courtois, a former Atletico star, says he expects a better reception than Morata when the teams take to the field at the club’s new Wanda Metropolitano stadium.

He told the club’s website: “He will get a different reception one from me. Alvaro played a lot of games against Atletico. I think he scored, I am not sure, so for him it will be a big game against his rivals. For me it will be more friendly but between the 90 minutes we are playing there will be rivalry for me as well because they want their team to win.”

The keeper says Morata’s goals against Mark Hughes’ outfit shows that his quality in the box is starting to shine through. He added: “We know he is a top striker. We know he has this ability and we’re very happy for him that he scored his hat-trick. Stoke away is a very hard game. Last year we won only in the last minutes. This year Arsenal lost here and United struggled so we must be pleased.

“Not only the hat-trick, but since the beginning he is scoring goals. He feels good, a striker lives on goals and he has already scored a few important ones this season. It’s his first hat-trick in the Premier League but he was feeling good already.”

Meanwhile, Courtois says he is looking forward to seeing old pal Diego Costa at the game; though the striker won’t be playing for his new side following his switch from Stamford Bridge.

He added: “He is a very good friend and it will be nice to see him there. I am happy that until the New Year we don’t have to face him and I hope we continue in the Champions League. You never know if we can face him later but I prefer not! He was always a nice guy in the dressing room. I have known him for six years and he is a good friend.

“We have a new striker and he is doing well and we have to move on. As a friend I will miss Diego, and as a player as well, but Alvaro came in and is doing a job so we are happy with that.”