After months of negotiation, it appears as if Tiago Mendes will finally be returning to Atlético. Marca is reporting that we have agreed terms on a one-year loan deal with Juventus, and the Portuguese midfielder is expected to return to Madrid either Sunday or Monday in order to undergo a physical.
Corriere dello Sport are also reporting that Tiago will play for Atlético next year.
The specific terms of the deal have not been included in the reports, however Sky Sport 24 has reported that the lease fee will be for €500,000. Juve have been forced into making a decision as the start of the season draws closer. Atlético had hoped to sign Tiago on a permanent basis, but the midfielder refused to accept a wage-cut of up to 50%.
The 29-year old will retain his €2.8 million salary, but it remains unclear what each club will contribute to the player’s wages. Tiago’s contract with the Bianconeri expires in 2012, so we’ll have to wait until next summer for these discussions to begin again.
There are concerns that the midfielder will not be physically fit in time to play against Inter in the UEFA Super Cup on the 27th of August. Tiago has been training on his own in Turin and it is doubtful that he is anywhere near match condition.
With the apparent return of Tiago to the squad, Atleti will have a stack of midfielders to choose from. Fan favourite Ignacio Camacho, whose future is the one most affected by the arrival of the Portugese midfielder, might have to look away Madrid on loan in search of playing time.
Update 16 August 2010 – Atlético confirm Tiago’s arrival
Atlético confirmed this afternoon that Tiago will join the Rojiblancos on loan for another season.
The 29 year old midfielder arrived in Madrid tonight and will join his teammates in training tomorrow. It’s not yet known if the Portuguese will travel with the team to Huelva.
It is assumed Tiago will wear the number 5 on the back of his shirt, like last season. Atlético have not announced a presentation for the player.