In our latest feature here at La Liga News UK, we take a look at the players now free to discuss terms with a new club, looking firstly at Atletico Madrid’s Juanfran.
Six years, 287 games to date, a La Liga title, a Europa League title and two Champions League runners-up medals is a good reminder of the impact and success, Juanfran has had with Atleti.
Having begun his career with arch-rivals Real Madrid, the defender made six appearances at the Santiago Bernabeu, before being moved out to Espanyol and then Osasuna.
His development and impact with the Pamplona-based side over his five year spell at the club garnered interest from a number of European sides, but it as Atletico, who moved to sign the full-back.
Quique Sanchez Flores then the boss then and it he who handed allowed Juanfran to take his chance in the starting eleven, impressing Diego Simeone who took over the following year.
Success quickly followed, playing an important part in Atleti’s Europa League campaign in 2012 and their La Liga title success in 2014.
That same year, Juanfran would feature in the Champions League final against his former club Real Madrid, but the defender would be on the losing side.
A new contract quickly followed, keeping him at the club until June 2018 and that is now up for debate…..
New deal or time to move on…..
The Spaniard has seen playing time come under question this season through injury and the good form of Croatian defender Sime Vrsaljko, begging the question if Simeone should allow him to leave or hand him a new contract.
There is no doubting his success and experience, having been a figure head in Atleti’s side for half a decade but with some struggles this season – calls have been made for a new approach and it has been mentioned that the defender and midfielder Gabi should be allowed to leave.
Negotiations over a new deal have been reported in Spanish media, but at present – Juanfran is available……