Madrid, Feb 16 (IANS) Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone has said that the real motive behind his contract renewal with the Spanish club was his players.
The 48-year-old Simeone, who took the helm of the Spanish club in December 2011, had extended his contract on Thursday until 2022, Efe news reported.
“I have renewed my contract because of the players we have. We can improve, we can carry on competing and fighting and that makes me want to compete as well,” Simeone said in a press conference on Friday after the first team’s final training session on the eve of Atletico’s away La Liga clash against Rayo Vallecano.
“I can only give the best of myself and thank the players, because they have made this work for the last seven years,” the Argentine coach added.
Simeone said that Rayo Vallecano has increased its toughness; however, the coach assured fans that Atletico would do whatever it takes to win Saturday’s clash.
“They (Rayo Vallecano) work very well as a team and they become even stronger at their stadium,” he said, adding that “It is going to be a tough game and we will have to take it in the direction we want it to go.”
Under Simeone, who has now extended his contract for a fourth time, the team has had the most successful era in its storied history. As such, Simeone has now become Atletico’s greatest coach, in many ways surpassing the late Luis Aragones, who guided the team to six titles.