Atlético rumoured to be targeting Diego

The exiled Brazilian could be on his way to the Calderón

Diego Ribas (

Diego Ribas (

According to reports in the media, Wolfsburg playmaker Diego Ribas is attracting interest from Atletico Madrid.

The Brazilian, once tipped to be the ‘Golden Boy’ of the next generation of Seleção stars, has failed to live up to the hype after leaving Werder Bremen for Juventus back in 2009.

Diego broke onto the scene at the German club in 2006 when he moved from Portugese side, FC Porto. He netted 52 goals in 128 games but was more well known for his creativity, passing and vision, which contributed to numerous assists.

Juventus signed the attacking midfielder in 2009 for a fee of around €24 million, and the transfer was seen as a step up  in the talented player’s career.

However, things didn’t work out in Italy and after just one season, Diego found his way back to Germany. He joined Wolfsburg for a drastically reduced fee of €15 million.

In the Volkswagen city his career continued on its downward spiral. After he heard he wouldn’t be playing, an unhappy Diego walked out of the Wolfsburg dressing room shortly before the criticial final match of the season, in which only a victory was enough for Die Wölfe to avoid relegation.

He copped a €510,000 fine and rumours began appearing that he would be leaving the club. Manager Felix Magath no longer counts on him and has ordered Diego to train with the reserves.

Atletico are apparently hoping that Wolfsburg will cut their losses and allow him to leave for just €5 million, quite a bargain considering he was valued at five times that just two years earlier.

If Gregorio Manzano can bring the best out of Diego and the player behaves himself, then Atletico could be on the verge of snapping up a great deal. He could potentially add a lot of flair and skill to the midfield. There is, however, a risk that football has seen the best of Diego and it will be a case of valuable money going down the drain.

  • Andres

    Did he have problems with discipline earlier too or was it just the Magath incident? Otherwise i think he would be a good addition to our midfield that lacks creativity.

  • k14

    He was completely out of my rader last year after he left Juve, he was great at Juve, but those losers just wanted a black sheep to blame.
    Hope this is actually true, would be a great deal.

  • k14

    Maybe we could trade him for RG ? ;p

  • Flo

    German media reports he is demanding 10 mio € a year as he currently gets 9…

    I don’t want this guy. What he did is unexcuseable.

  • Gert

    I was afraid he’d occupy another non EU spot, but it seems he has an Italian passport!
    It’s yet another midfielder…..

  • Davide

    I agree with k14, he was good at Juve but they made him a scapegoat. But that still does not excuse his diciplinary issues at Wolfsburg. Also he is not the kind of players that is a midfield general and has a winner mentality and can dictate team movement except supplying some nice passes. Wolfsburg were almost relegated and his statistic is far from impressive, both at Wolfburg and Juventus. His movement is good but he is no Cesc, Xav, Sneijder or Pirlo. Maybe he will be great for Atlético, as he is umproven in Spain. But you never know. I still think it’s worth taking a risk because of the total lack och creative midfielders at the club now. My dream scenario would still be moving Reyes to a central playmaking positon in front of two holding midfielders in 4-3-3.

  • starvs

    We really do need an attacking/creative midfield player, and have for years, but not sure I want a potential locker room problem in Diego. Although for 5 million it would be hard not to take a flier on a player with undeniable talent.

    Hopefully Manzano would be able to keep him in check.

  • k14

    umm, after a little research, it seems diego been offered 8mil euro from Chinese team, also another $12 million+bonus from a brazilan team.
    Our highest earner is aguro currently with 6mil ?
    And I’m sure atleti won’t offer more than 5mil euro(or at least I hope so).
    So will he be accepting a cut in half salary offer for a last chance of fame and glory in Europe ?
    I seriously doubt he would.

  • starvs

    k14, those sound like some outrageous numbers from some second tier leagues (Chinese soccer league?), I would doubt the veracity of those rumours.

  • Chalet

    This guy isn´t even worth thinking about signing him.
    He´s a cancer and a mercenary and his attitude completely sucks.

  • Davide


    No he is right. Chinese team Guangzhou Evergrande have got into some serious cash lately from huge investors and spending power has gone through the roof. They signed argentinian midfielder Dario Conca recently from Fluminense and made him the highest earner in world football after Messi and Ronaldo. His yearly wage is about 11 million USD. So i would most definately believe that Diego might be going to China if they are showing interest in him.

  • k14

    “Chinese club Guangzhou Evergrande made quite the splash this week when they signed Fluminense’s Argentine midfielder Dario Conca to a deal reportedly worth €26.5 million over two and a half years, making him the world’s third-highest paid player behind superstars Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronald.”

    I Know in the Saudi League we have a Swedish player that is being payed around 3million euro.
    You would be surprised at how much some no namers get paid what you call “second tier leagues” 🙂

  • starvs

    Well shit I stand corrected I guess, I just figure knowing how soccer rumors are it’s likely just all talk.

  • Javi

    Diego is a great player, but as some of you have said, he demands too much money, and honestly, he hasn’t win anything important yet.
    Instead, why don’t we negotiate for Croatian Ivan Rakitic, Sevilla paid €1.5m for him, he was considered the best winter signing last season, which he truly deserves, he made an instant impact at Sevilla, right now Sevilla’s new manager Garcia Toral wants Gio Dos Santos at the club, so maybe there’s a chance Sevilla might agree to sell him, Atleti should be offering at least €15m as Rakitic is a player that does makes a difference on the field, and Manzano brought him to Spain so as I said maybe there’s a chance we might sign this great player.

  • RojiBlanco

    Why don’t we just use Reyes as our creative midfielder.

  • urban

    If we really gave up on griezmann I would go fo him. We really need such player and for 5 mln it is a bargain. With regard to the disciplinary issues I believe that we have to many highly professional Brazilians in the team who will help to keep him straight

  • Yon

    Just keep trying for Griezmann, if we get him keen enough he will eventually do a Kun……

  • Flo

    15 mio for Rakitic???

  • dgsozkan

    no doubt that he is a talented mildfielder.However , he is a real troublemaker. Do we really need a man who can easily destroy the team ? I don’t think so. I hope it’s only a rumor , I do not want to see him in Atletico jersey.

  • Sergio Lopez

    Diego would be the best signing of this summer. The problem is to ensure him to decrease salary & Wolfsburg – to sell for so little.

  • k14

    Making wolfsburh sell is not an issue, I think they will be more than willing to give him up for free. I just don’t see diego willing to accept a salary cut, specially when there are other offers with an increased salary.

  • leika

    i’ll just line up some playmakers who would be realistic targets: Jadson, Gourcuff, Arda Turan, Vassiljev, Matias Fernandez, Mata, Machado, Aissati, Cabaye.

  • Gignac then?

  • Javi

    leika, Do you think Vassiljev us ready for La Liga?, I think he is a great player, but I don’t think he is ready yet for Spain, he had great matches for the Estonia team, I think he needs a little more time for another league, maybe he could play in the Eredivisie.
    You named Mata as a realistic target, if you believe so, then Ivan Rakitic is also a realistic target as I commented before, because Sevilla are going to buy Gio Dos Santos, and I believe he could be our playmaker, no offense but I believe that Rakitic is one step above of all the ones you named except Mata, also I don’t think Mata wants to join Atleti.

  • Chalet

    I really don´t get why people are so keen on signing this well-known troublemaker.
    A lot of people who follow the German Bundesliga regularly have told me that he is a natural born diva and a cheater on and off the pitch and that his father loves to make weird statements about him.
    It has already been like this before he joined Wolfsburg and I can´t imagine us being in such a desperate state that we really want to sign this lad who will cause nothing but problems!

  • starvs

    I keep going back and forth on Diego. Ultimately I am tantalized by the obvious talent he brings to our position of most need, that is to say more so than any other realistic target we have.

    Is it worth taking the gamble on the crazy he brings? Depends how cheap he is…

  • k14

    I don’t remember hearing about any “trouble making” with previous clubs before wolfs, and there is always 2 sides to every story.