Wolfsburg player Diego has announced that Atletico Madrid have not approached him regarding a transfer to La Liga and reiterated that he wants to concentrate on helping the German side improve.
The 27-year-old’s career at the Wolves seemed all but over after he had a huge falling out with then-coach Felix Magath, and was sent on loan to Los Colchoneros last season.
He was widely expected to jump ship in the summer after the trainer made clear that Diego is not part of his plans, but a move never materialised.
Following, Magath’s exit from the club, however, the Brazilian has integrated back into the team and stated that he is completely focused on Wolfsburg.
“We hear a lot about me in Spain, but I can confirm I have not had any contact with Atletico,” Diego told Kicker.
“I am at Wolfsburg and very grateful for my situation. I just hope I have a good season.”
The attacking midfielder made it clear that he is prepared to fight to keep his club away from relegation, but also has hopes that his side will eventually climb up the league into one of the top positions.
“We are prepared to fight to avoid relegation,” he added.
“I hope we can get into the top four, but we know our situation is complicated. We have to go step by step.”
Sofiane Feghouli has stated that he has no intention of leaving Valencia anytime soon, amid reported interest from around Europe.
Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester United are believed to have shortlisted the 22-year-old Algeria international, who netted twice in the 4-2 victory over BATE Borisov in the Champions League on Wednesday.
However, Feghouli insists he only has eyes on staying at his current club and does not believe the ongoing uncertainty surrounding a contract extension should be interpreted as a sign of disloyalty.
“I understand that the fans want to know if I will sign a new contract,” he told reporters.
“What I know best is how to play football and off the field I leave things to my agents, who I trust completely. I am very happy here and I want to play for this team as long as possible.”
He then went onto comment on his team’s poor away form since the start of the Liga campaign, stressing what they must do in order to improve.
“It is true that away from home we are not doing as well as we would like, but we must keep working,” he insisted.
“I think it is a mental problem, because we have the quality to beat many teams. We must respect all teams, but on paper Valencia are superior.
“Valladolid will come out at 200 per cent, they will pressure us and will be highly motivated. We must be at our best because there are no easy games in La Liga.”
Valencia currently sit ninth in the league table and are preparing for their next fixture at Valladolid on Sunday.
Bayern Munich coach Jupp Heynckes has expressed his delight with the way Javi Martinez has adapted to life at the club.
The defensive midfielder joined the Bavarians during the summer for a fee of €40 million from Athletic Bilbao in a move which raised eyebrows, as various sections of the media felt too much money had been shelled out.
However, the 67-year-old coach feels that in comparison to transfers made by other European clubs, Martinez, who was recently called up to the Spain squad for the friendly against Panama, will prove to be shrewd business.
“Javi is on the right track and he will become even better,” the former Real Madrid boss told reporters at a press conference ahead of Bayern’s league match against Eintracht Frankfurt on Saturday.
“When I look at the signings other top clubs in Europe have made this summer, then Martinez has surely been a hit.”
The German giants currently occupy top spot in the Bundesliga with a comfortable seven-point lead over Schalke. They meet Eintracht Frankfurt at Allianz-Arena on November 10 with the kick-off being scheduled for 15.30CET.
By Romeo Agresti
Robert Lewandowski has caught the attention of Juventus, Goal.com can reveal.
The Borussia Dortmund striker has developed into a key player for the Bundesliga club since joining from Lech Poznan in the summer of 2010, and his performances have not gone unnoticed in Italy.
The Bianconeri sent scouts to BVB’s 2-2 Champions League draw against Real Madrid on Tuesday and Lewandowski did enough to convince representatives of his qualities.
Nevertheless, the 24-year-old will not be available on the cheap if Juventus decide to step up their interest in the player.
Dortmund have no intention of selling Lewandowski, and an offer in the region of €35 million could be needed to lure him away from his current club.
The Poland international has a contract at Signal Iduna Park until June 2014, but BVB are keen to extend his stay at the club.
Ibrahim Afellay has not given up on his dream of succeeding at Barcelona just yet and says he is determined to return to the Blaugrana once his loan deal with Schalke expires.
The attacking midfielder joined the Gelsenkirchen side on a one-year loan deal at the start of the 2012-13 campaign, but a permanent switch to Germany does not seem to be an option for Afellay at this point.
“It is my goal to return to Barcelona. When I look back at my time at the club, I can only be positive about it,” Afellay told OnsOranje.nl.
“We always had so much fun on the training pitch. When I returned home after a practice session, I could hardly wait for the next day. You really notice that you are impoving as a player.
“I still speak with guys like Andres Iniesta and Xavi on a regular basis. They are among the best players in the world. [Lionel] Messi is the best of the best.
“They are extremely committed. There’s no other way, though, if you are to perform at such a high level.”
Afellay has made 14 appearances for Schalke since joining the Bundesliga side.