Football: Simeone hints at extending Atletico stay

Argentinian coach Diego Simeone says he could stay at Atletico Madrid beyond his current contract, despite shortening it recently by two years until June 2018, in an interview published on Friday (Dec 23).
Argentinian coach Diego Simeone says he could stay at Atletico Madrid beyond his current contract, despite shortening it recently by two years until June 2018, in an interview published on Friday (Dec 23).PHOTO: AFP

(AFP) - Argentinian coach Diego Simeone says he could stay at Atletico Madrid beyond his current contract, despite shortening it recently by two years until June 2018, in an interview published on Friday (Dec 23).

"It will be difficult to find a better team than Atletico in my future as a coach. So why not remain linked to a club I love?," he told Spanish sports daily Marca.

"I have possibly found my place in the world, we will see," he added.

In charge of Atletico since 2011, Simeone signed a contract in March 2015 that originally tied him to the club until June 2020.

But the 46-year-old, who has been linked to many of Europe's top clubs, including Paris Saint-Germain, Arsenal and Inter Milan, in September reduced the contract to 2018 after talks with Atletico.

Simeone said that decision was in the best interests of the club, who he took to the Spanish league title in 2014 and to two of the last three Champions League finals.

"I believe it is the best situation which we found to continue being demanding of myself and, at the same time, think of what is best for the club," he said.

"If the club continues to want to count on us, and if it carries out the efforts it has been doing for this...we can possibly remain together," he added.

Atletico lost out on a first Champions League title to Real Madrid on penalties in May and finished just three points adrift of La Liga champions Barcelona.

The club's form has stuttered this season and Simeone's side find themselves in sixth in La Liga with 28 points.

Atletico are not in league action again until Jan 7 as La Liga takes a winter break over the new year.