According to reports out of Italy and Spain, Atlético striker Diego Forlán appears set to join Inter Milan for a fee of €5 million, while Wolfsburg’s Diego Ribas is said to be close to finalising a move to the Vicente Calderón. Atleti have also reportedly taken Liverpool midfielder Dani Pacheco on loan with a purchase option, though he will be playing at Rayo Vallecano this season.
Despite spending most of the season denying that a rift between them existed, it was clear early on that Atlético manager Quique Sanchez Flores and star forward Diego Forlan aren’t exactly the best of friends. The feud between the manager and striker finally popped its lid Tuesday evening following Atleti’s defeat to Racing.
Atlético resorted to their old ways yet again by turning in back-to-back stinkers in just a span of four days, with losses to Málaga and Racing Santander. Though los Rojiblancos still have a solid chance of securing a Europa League berth for next season, they felt it necessary to put their fans through the torture chamber one last time for the final stage of the current campaign.
With confirmations that Turkish side Besiktas have submitted a firm offer to Atlético for Diego Forlán surfacing in the global press on Thursday, los Rojiblancos’ future offense is starting to come into focus. Borja, Salvio and Adrián will reportedly be competing for the opportunity to start alongside Kun next year, while Costa and Piatti could be in the mix as well.
Atlético continued their steady climb up the Primera División ladder on Sunday with an all-around dominant showing over freefalling visitors Real Sociedad. The lively 3-0 victory was los Colchoneros’ second win in a row, and they now trail 5th place by a single point ahead of next weekend’s clash against Espanyol.
Atlético directors Enrique Cerezo and Miguel Ángel Gil Marín found themselves very busy in Turkey on Friday, as they looked to take care of a number of business transactions in Istanbul. Reports in the Turkish media confirm they are, in fact, negotiating the sale of Diego Forlán to Besiktas, the purchase of Arda Turan from Galatasaray and a sponsorship deal for next season with Turkish Airlines.
Diego Forlán has had little rest this international break, playing the full 90 minutes in both games for Uruguay against Estonia and the Republic of Ireland. Luis Perea had to come on and play for Colombia, whilst David de Gea and Álvaro Domínguez also played the full 90 minutes for Spain U21s.
MARCA is reporting that Atlético will part ways with Portugese midfielder Tiago at the end of the season. On loan from Juventus since January 2010, the former Chelsea man has reportedly failed to impress and no effort will be made to retain him. According to other news sources, Raul Garcia and Antonio Lopez are set to follow Tiago out of the club.
A month after backing out from a scheduled appearance on “El Larguero” at the last minute, Atlético manager Quique Sanchez Flores made his way over to Cadena SER for an interview. The Rojiblanco boss declined to talk about his future at the club, though he did say he was “grateful to Atlético.” He also spoke about Forlán and Juanfran’s present situation.
Last night we caught a glimpse at ‘what could’ve been’ with an uplifting victory over our once direct rivals Villarreal. Perhaps the triumph was somewhat bittersweet as many fans will likely wonder where this sensational team has been hiding all season long. Check out our notes and quotes from this magical evening at the Calderón.