Atletico players welcome Super League withdrawal

Madrid (AFP) – Atletico Madrid’s players have expressed their “satisfaction” at the club’s decision to withdraw from the European Super League project on Wednesday.

“From the Atletico squad we want to communicate our satisfaction over the final decision to withdraw the commitment to the Super League project taken by our club,” a statement by captain Koke said on Twitter.

“We will keep fighting to help from our position so that Atleti grow with the values of effort and sporting merit that have always characterised us, so that all of you continue to feel reflected in that identity. We will continue working hard, focused on the match tomorrow.”

Atletico became the lastest club to pull out of the huge controversial competition on Wednesday, with the project on the brink of collapse. 

Only Real Madrid and Barcelona officially remain, after England’s ‘Big Six’ teams were the first to quit, before the Italian trio Inter Milan, Juventus and AC Milan followed suit.

Atletico said in a statement earlier on Wednesay the decision to join had been made “in response to circumstances that no longer exist today”.

The club added the “first team squad and coach have shown their satisfaction with the club’s decision, understanding that sporting merits must prevail over any other criteria.”

Atletico were one of three La Liga sides involved in the breakaway tournament, with Real Madrid and their president Florentino Perez at the heart of the project. 

Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman said in a press conference on Wednesday: “I spoke with the president [Joan Laporta] yesterday and he explained the club’s position. 

“But a lot has changed since then. It’s best not to say much now, no one knows what will happen. There were teams that were in; now they say they don’t want to be in. What I want most is the best for this club.”

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