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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Falcao set for Atletico stay

Radamel Falcao is keen to see out the season with Atletico Madrid as a gesture of thanks to club president Enrique Cerezo.

Radamel Falcao's goalscoring exploits have drawn global attention
Radamel Falcao's goalscoring exploits have drawn global attention

The Colombian striker is one of the most coveted players in world football due to a strike rate of 20 goals in 17 appearances this season, which includes a hat-trick in Atletico’s 4-1 Super Cup victory over Chelsea.

Manchester City and Chelsea lead the way for Falcao’s signature with Roman Abramovich reportedly prepared to spend £48 million in order to secure the capture of the 26-year-old but it could be in vain with his mind made up to remain in the Spanish capital in order to repay the club's president who has been so influential in making him feel wanted.

“I recognise the great effort Enrique Cerezo has made for me to stay at the club,” he told reporters in Bogota.

“And thank goodness our sporting results have been positive. We expect that to remain so until the end of the season.”

Atletico sit second in the Primera Division table, nine points behind league leaders Barcelona but also nine points ahead of rivals Real Madrid after 17 games.

The aim of Diego Simeone’s side to qualify automatically for the Champions League would be greatly bolstered by the retention of Falcao for the rest of the season.

Cerezo has repeatedly underlined his determination to keep hold of not just Falcao, but the whole Atletico squad in order to retain their unique spirit.

Cerezo told AS: "He's the best striker in the world and belongs to Atletico. We are proud to have him on our team. But besides Falcao, Atletico has players of the highest level and it is right that we recognize their work. Our squad is very competitive.

"We have an extraordinary coach, a squad full of great players and the fans are always behind the team. There is a great spirit between the stands and the squad and this is always very important. It is imperative to the smooth running of the team."

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