FC Barcelona’s new Turkish midfielder Arda Turan admitted Friday it would “not be easy” to fit in to the Spanish champions’ possession-based style of play after his move from Atletico Madrid, but he felt up to the challenge.
“I will be playing in a new system and I think I can adapt to it. It will not be easy but I hope to have a good transition,” the 28-year-old told a news conference after being officially presented at the club.
Turan became a star of coach Diego Simeone’s tough and physical Atletico side after arriving in Spain from Galatasaray in 2011.
Now he will play behind the striking trio of Argentine star Lionel Messi, Brazil’s Neymar and Uruguay’s Luis Suarez in a team noted for its skills and passing-based game.
He said he had received offers from other clubs but did not hesitate to sign the five-year contract with Barcelona, reigning European champions.
The club said in a statement on July 6 that it would pay an initial fee of 34 million euros ($38 million) with a potential seven million euros more in bonuses.
Turan’s transfer has still to be ratified by the club’s new board after members elect a new president on July 18.
He will not be able to make his debut for Barcelona until 2016 when they serve out a FIFA transfer ban over alleged violations of rules on signing minors.