President Enrique Cerezo believes Atlético de Madrid can cope with Diego Costa and Filipe Luís sales and refutes Miranda rumoursAtlético de Madrid's Miranda [R] and Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo jump for the ball during the Champions League Final at the Estádio da Luz in Lisbon on May 24, 2014
President Enrique Cerezo has insisted that Atlético de Madrid can be even better this season, despite the loss of key personnel.
Last term, Diego Simeone’s side won La Liga and were minutes away from defeating city rivals Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League final.
It was monumental campaign from a squad with a limited budget, but has lead to a number of instrumental players getting drawn into illustrious moves elsewhere.
Diego Costa, Filipe Luís and Thibaut Courtois have joined Chelsea [the latter was on loan] and David Villa has signed with new Major League Soccer side New York City, while Diego's moved on to Fenerbahçe and Adrián was bought by Porto.
To cover the loss of these players, Miguel Ángel Moyà, Guilherme Siqueira, Mario Mandžukić and Jan Oblak have been brought in and Cerezo is confident that with a few more tweaks, Atlético can be competitive.
“10 players haven’t gone. Four have - Diego Costa, Filipe Luís, David Villa and Thibaut Courtois,” he said, according to AS, as reported by Football Espana.
“I don’t want to say it wrong but if we solve two problems we will enjoy a team better than last year.
“Last season wasn’t a miracle. It was a team effort, the Coach, the fans, the directors…it was a worldwide effort in which what we got was theoretically very difficult but in the end it was very easy.
“The punishment was not winning the European Cup.”
Cerezo has also rebuked rumours suggesting defender Miranda could be sold. The 29 year-old, who was signed on a free transfer from São Paulo in July 2011, has won four major honours with Atlético and made 52 appearances in all competitions last season.
“Miranda is our best centre-back,” insisted Cerezo. “A lot of people want him but we know what he is doing here and he is going to stay here.”