Atlético Madrid fans have something to cheer about ahead of their all-Madrid Champions League derby.
No, Diego Simeone hasn’t agreed to get back on his meds. But the club did lock down one of Europe’s most exciting midfielders through 2021.
Saúl Ñínguez, one of the hottest commodities on the market right now, has spurned the advances from Manchester United to remain with the Rojiblancos through 2021.
The Red Devils had been aggressively courting the young Spaniard even though he was previously under contract through 2020 with Atlético.
While terms of the deal have yet to be disclosed, Saúl played so well this year that the club was forced to restructure his deal, even though he just got a new deal last year.
Check out his highlights from 2015/2016 to see what I’m talking about:
It’s widely believed that Saúl’s buyout clause, which was reported to be $50 million before the new deal, has been increased to ward off Europe’s elite clubs who sought to poach the 21-year-old out from under Atlético. His new buyout clause could be $100 million or more.
Saúl released a statement that sounds like it was drafted by the club’s PR guy through Atlético confirming his new contract,
“I’M DELIGHTED TO BE ABLE TO CONTINUE DEFENDING THE ATLÉTICO SHIRT.”
It’s worth noting that 40% of Saúl’s economic rights are owned by a limited company that’s registered in laissez faire Dublin. Sounds like he’s signed to Birdman. Do your Googles if you don’t know what I’m talking about.
The new deal is great news for Atlético Madrid, who have emerged as a dark horse in a league that’s usually dominated by by Barcelona and Real Madrid.
If Atlético can beat Real Madrid and win the Champions League later this month, it will be a real coup for Diego Simeone and his ragtag troop of bandits.
I’d like to see Atlético win it all. It’s been a good year for the underdogs, with Leicester winning the Premier League.
Let’s keep that ball rolling.
Who you got in the Champions League final?