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Oct 30, 2012

Radamel Falcao pledges Atletico loyalty

Atletico Madrid forward Radamel Falcao told a Spanish TV show Tuesday that Atletico Madrid is his "only reality," although he added that his continued presence on the team is not up to him but rather "to certain necessities of the club and the dependence upon certain results."

Falcao said he did not seek a transfer this past summer because "Gil Marin told me if we did not get into Champions it would be difficult. They worked hard to keep me."

The 26-year-old Colombian has delivered the winning goal in half of Atletico's league matches to help it climb in the standings, behind Barcelona on goal difference. Falcao's 10 league goals have the Europa League champions on an eight-game winning streak for its best run since 1992-93.

"I have three years on my contract," he said about his future with the team. "I don't know what I am going to do tomorrow. I am happy here, enjoying this present moment with the club and later, Atletico Madrid and the corresponding people will decide what my future will be."

Atletico Madrid is La Liga co-leader with Barcelona and plays at third-division Real Jaen on Wednesday. Falcao's 13 goals in nine appearances have helped his team as the 40 million Euros ($52 million) striker has stayed in reach of Lionel Messi's 17 goals and Cristiano Ronaldo's 18 this season.

Atletico has won 11 straight matches in all competitions -- including in the Europa League -- and extended its club-record unbeaten run to 22 games dating back to April.

Falcao's father, Radamel Garcia, caused controversy several months ago when he said that his son has always dreamed of playing for Real Madrid.

"I feel differently because I grew up," Falcao said Tuesday by way of clarification. "I haven't lived with him in 12 years. I became a man and my thinking has changed. I have matured and he hasn't been with me during the process. He doesn't live with me to know what my present and future dreams are."

Asked whether he is tired of the rumors about a transfer to Real Madrid, Falcao said: "that I am loved by Atleti is all I need."

Falcao said he was honored to be including among the 23 nominees for the FIFA Ballon d'Or.

Information from Efe News Agency was used in this report.

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