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CONFIRMADO: Atlético announce Vrsaljko exit, Arias arrival

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Bienvenido, Santiago! (And mucha suerte, Šime.)

Colombia v England: Round of 16 - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images

On the same Tuesday in which Atlético Madrid introduced ex-Sporting Clube de Portugal winger Gelson Martins, the club shuffled their right back deck as they confirmed both Šime Vrsaljko’s transfer to Inter Milan and Santiago Arias’ arrival from PSV Eindhoven.

A fee for Arias has not yet been mentioned, but Marca report that he has signed a four-year contract with an €80 million release clause. (Atlético’s official announcement says the Colombian has a five-year contract.)

Arias joined PSV in 2013 and played 173 games for the Dutch champions. The 26-year-old won the Eredivisie title three times and was the league’s Player of the Year in 2017/18. He’s played in two World Cups with Colombia and Atlético’s statement described him as “a young and at the same time experienced player in Europe, with great physical potential and quality.”

Vrsaljko, meanwhile, has gotten his move back to Italy in the form of an initial loan with an obligation to buy. The Croatian wanted to return to Serie A and Inter will part with €24 million total in order to bring him into their project. The 26-year-old helped his country to the World Cup final in Russia, but his performances for Atleti told a much different story. He struggled with injuries over his two seasons in Madrid and his end to the 2017/18 season was outright disastrous — a red card in the Europa League semifinal against Arsenal and a dismal first half in the final against Olympique Marseille.