Atletico’s Tiago Mendez is apparently set to make a return to Stamford Bridge this summer, claim reports
Atletico Madrid enjoyed a spectacular season and veteran Tiago, who played 33 games for the side, had a major part to play in it. The 33 year old was part of the club that won the league and were runners up in the Champions League.
Tiago has previously played for for Benfica, Lyon, Juventus and spent one season with the Blues in the Premier League when current boss Jose Mourinho bought him for £12m from Benfica ten years ago, during his first term in charge. Marca report that the player might be on his way back to Stamford Bridge as he is not keen on renewing his contract which runs out on 30th June. Marca report:
The player’s contract runs out on 30th June and the manager sees him as an important part of the team, both on the pitch and in the dressing room. Tiago, however, has decided to try his luck with Mourinho.
Tiago had recently spoken of his ‘unforgettable’ time at Stamford Bridge in that one season- 2004/05. This was before Atletico took on Chelsea in the Champions League final.
“It was a great year here, unforgettable for me. They still have the same manager [Jose Mourinho] and some of the same team-mates”, he said.
Tiago left Chelsea just after a season as the arrival of Micheal Essien limited his first team chances. Mourinho and co didn’t want the Portuguese midfielder to depart, but Tiago made his decision as he wanted to play week in, week out and Gérard Houllier wanted him at Lyon and guaranteed him regular game time.
His departure from Lyon seemed imminent after two seasons in the French Ligue 1, as both AC Milan and Juventus started courting the player. He was roped in by Juventus for €13 million. Overall his two and a half years long spell with the Serie A side was one to forget as it marred both with controversy- he refused to join Everton on loan even as the two clubs had agreed a deal and forcibly locked himself with club president Giovanni Cobolli Gigli in a toilet- and injury. He joined Atletico in January 2010 on loan until the end of the season. The loan was extended for another season and Tiago finally moved permanently to Colchoneros in July 2011. Since then he has established himself in the starting lineup and is an imperative and very important part of the Atletico team.
It is not certain that the player would leave the club he loves so much. Diego Simeone too, is a huge admirer of the central midfielder and would do everything in his strength to keep the player. Atletico have reportedly offered the player a two year extension but the 33 year old hasn’t agreed to anything as yet. Tiago is perhaps looking for a more lucrative contract and if the La Liga champions offer him that, they would be able to hold on to their prized asset. Otherwise, only comments from the player and time would suggest if he is definitely looking to move out of the Vicente Calderón.