Chelsea would leave it late, but they officially announced they had signed Saul Niguez on a season-long loan from Atletico Madrid shortly before midnight on Tuesday:
Saul had been on Atletico’s books since he joined from Real Madrid’s youth ranks in 2008.
In that time he notched 340 appearances for the Spanish outfit, scoring 43 goals and assisting 20.
The 26-year-old will now add some serious quality to Chelsea’s midfield, which has had a few issues over the last couple of years due to N’Golo Kante’s continuing injury woes.
Saul on Kepa
Now, after signing for the Blues, Saul has revealed which player played a key role in him joining the Londoners.
And, somewhat surprisingly, Saul would claim that it is important Kepa Arrizabalaga is at Chelsea and that he would have had second thoughts if Kepa had not been there:
“I’ll be flying to London tomorrow, I’m coming to the champions of Europe.
“I’ll fight for my place in the starting 11, it’s important that [Kepa] is there.
“Kepa has been my friend for a long time. It’s important that he is there. I would have second thoughts if he wasn’t at Chelsea. [Cesar] Azpilicueta and Marcos Alonso also helped me join Chelsea.”
Saul would also send a message to Chelsea fans ahead of his arrival:
“I am very excited to start this new challenge with Chelsea. Blues fans, I am one of you now and I can’t wait to wear the shirt, start training and see all of you. See you soon!”
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