Atlético Madrid finally got their striker for the new season this weekend, ending months of speculation by announcing the signing of Kevin Gameiro from Sevilla on a four-year deal.
Gameiro was presented to around 7,000 fans at the Vicente Calderón on Sunday evening, insisting that he joined the club “to win trophies” as he spoke to press beforehand.
Having cut their losses on last year’s big investment – Jackson Martínez – back in February, it’s been no secret that a striker has been top of Atleti’s wishlist.
Diego Costa was the name that many wanted to partner Antoine Griezmann, and it looked as if the feeling was mutual with the Brazilian-turned-Spaniard reportedly keen on a return.
Despite Chelsea manager Antonio Conte admitting yesterday that his star striker could leave the club this summer, Atlético opted for Gameiro, paying €32m + bonuses to secure the Frenchman’s signature.
The 29 year-old was supposedly the subject of interest from Barcelona, but had his heart set on a move to the capital after speaking with manager Diego Simeone.
“When Atlético called me I had no doubts, it’s a giant club,” he said upon arrival in Madrid. “I spoke to Simeone on the phone, he told me he wanted me and that we can have a great season together.”
Gameiro comes off the back of his best ever season at club level, scoring 29 goals to help Sevilla to their third successive Europa League crown.
However, in his presentation he stated his desire to go one better and help Atleti finally achieve their dream of winning the Champions League.
“I’m here to win trophies,” he said. “The Champions League, La Liga… I’m not sure, but I want to win and score lots of goals.”
“I think I can achieve great things here. In my head I wanted to join Atlético from the start, I’ve signed for four years and I’m sure they will be successful.”
President Enrique Cerezo also spoke at the event, and thanked Gameiro for choosing Atleti despite having good offers from other clubs.
“We’re proud to present our new striker. He is a natural goalscorer, and has speed and intensity in attack which helped convince us that he was the right man for the team.”
Going the other way in a separate deal is Luciano Vietto, who joins Sevilla on a one-year loan deal. The Andalusians have an option to buy according to reports, although Atleti can still bring him back if they choose by paying a nominal fee.
Are you happy with Gameiro? What do you make of the Diego Costa situation?