Transfer market

Marcelino: Rodrigo told me he was joining Atlético Madrid

The Spain forward's collapsed move to Atlético enhances Valencia's prospects of competing in the Champions League, according to the Valencia boss.

Marcelino: Rodrigo told me he was joining Atletico Madrid

Valencia boss Marcelino revealed Rodrigo told him he was joining Atlético Madrid before the forward's move to the Spanish capital fell through.

The 28-year-old missed two days of training this week to complete a switch to Atlético, only for Valencia's LaLiga counterparts to pull the plug on a deal.

Speaking on Thursday, Valencia general director Mateu Alemany claimed Atletico's offer - rumoured to be in the region of €60million - had been withdrawn.

"Those who were offering are now no longer offering, and what seemed like an agreement could not be executed," Alemany told Mundo Deportivo.

"There was a principle of agreement. Subsequently, due to circumstances that have nothing to do with Valencia, it did not go ahead. Between clubs, there was a principle agreement, and right now that offer is no longer on the table."

Rodrigo has now returned to training and is in contention to play against Real Sociedad on Saturday in Valencia's opening league fixture of the campaign.

Head coach Marcelino welcomed the twist in the long-running transfer saga, believing it enhances his side's Champions League prospects on the back of last season's fourth-place finish in LaLiga.

"As you know Rodrigo at one point was transferred, so the club told me the same day of training on Tuesday," Marcelino said at Friday's news conference. "He also told me that he was going to Atlético. But suddenly, that transfer was not completed. 

"Starting from there, Rodrigo wanted to train again. He never asked me to leave Valencia, it is something I want to make clear. We are trying to return to normal.

"We are a team with Rodrigo and another without Rodrigo. If he is not there, we will have to review the objectives of Valencia because in the market it is very difficult to find a football player who brings us the same footballing merits as Rodrigo.

"To play in the Champions League the team must look for a higher potential. But if the team is weakened, the Champions League must not be a priority."

Spanish clubs have until September 2 to complete their transfer business.