• La Liga

Atletico pip Spurs to Villa signing

ESPN staff
July 8, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
David Villa look set to remain in Spain with a transfer to Atletico Madrid © AP
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Barcelona have confirmed that David Villa will move to Atletico Madrid for a fee that could potentially rise to £4.4 million, with the Rojiblancos beating Tottenham Hotspur to the striker's signature.

Villa, 31, had been the subject of a "ridiculous bid" from Spurs, according to Spanish daily Marca, and the offer was immediately rejected by the Barca board.

There was also rumoured interest from Manchester United and Spanish paper Sport suggested Villa could be used as part of an elaborate swap deal aimed to take Wayne Rooney to the Camp Nou.

But, while the Spain international is yet to pass a medical, it seems that Atletico Madrid have all but secured the signature of the national team's all-time leading scorer.

The transfer appears to suggest Atletico have cooled their interest in another of their transfer targets, Alvaro Negredo, meaning the Sevilla striker could be a step closer to a proposed move to Manchester City.

Barcelona revealed the move on their official website, with Villa's departure to bring them a maximum of £4.4m, should the striker stay in Madrid for at least three seasons, while Barca will also pocket 50% from any future transfer if Villa leaves the Vicente Calderon.

It seems to be an excellent piece of business by Atletico, who are hoping that the experienced goalscorer will help fill the void left by Radamel Falcao following his move to Monaco.

The Barca website also points out that Villa's first competitive game for his new club could be against the Catalans in the Spanish Supercopa.

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