Demichelis signs up for 'special' season at Atlético

Soon after announcing the arrival of David Villa from FC Barcelona, Club Atlético de Madrid have moved for Málaga CF defender Martín Demichelis on a one-year contract.

Martín Demichelis of Málaga CF celebrates after scoring a goal during the Spanish Liga match against RC Celta de Vigo
Martín Demichelis of Málaga CF celebrates after scoring a goal during the Spanish Liga match against RC Celta de Vigo ©AFP/Getty Images

Club Atlético de Madrid continue to strengthen for their participation in the UEFA Champions League group stage, with Málaga CF defender Martín Demichelis arriving at the Vicente Calderón on a free transfer.

The 32-year-old Argentinian international has agreed a one-year deal with last season's UEFA Super Cup and Copa del Rey winners. He said that Atlético coach Diego Simeone was a key factor in his decision to continue playing in Spain. "I went back to Argentina thinking I would stay there, but Simeone convinced me otherwise," the former FC Bayern München centre-back explained. "He knows about my career, what I have done lately and the level I can play at."

Having spent seven full seasons at Bayern – winning four German domestic doubles and a UEFA Champions League runners-up medal – Demichelis signed for Málaga in the winter of 2010 and last term helped the Boquerones to the quarter-finals of European club football's elite competition.

"I had two and a half marvellous years at Málaga and achieved some great things," the ex-CA River Plate player said. "I have now been asked to participate in a special – and very demanding – season with Atlético where we will be competing on many fronts." 

Following their third-place Liga finish, Atlético will take part in the UEFA Champions League group stage for the first time since 2009/10.