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Europa League round of 16 draw

Europa League
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By ESPN Staff

Simao says goodbye to Atletico

Simao Sabrosa has bid an emotional farewell to Atletico Madrid after opting to leave for Besiktas.

The move was announced on Wednesday with the Portuguese winger holding a press conference on Thursday to express his gratitude to everyone at the Vicente Calderon before starting his new adventure in Turkey.

Simao joined Atletico in 2007 for € 20 million from Benfica and believes he has given his all in the Spanish capital.

He said: "I don't think I have defrauded anyone. It is difficult for me, I can hardly speak because since I came to Atletico I have grown and become a better professional.

"When I arrived I said I would do my best to win a title and I eventually ended up with two in Europe (the Europa League and the European Super Cup).

"I have to thank the fans, the support they have given me has been spectacular. I will continue to follow Atletico as a fan myself.''

Atletico president Don Enrique Cerezo hailed Simao's contribution over the past three and a half years.

"We are here today to say farewell to a great player who has had so much success with Atletico Madrid,'' he said.

"And we are here, above all else, to say farewell to a great person who we have all been privileged to know over the past few years.''

Simao bowed out on a high by grabbing the only goal from the penalty spot on his final appearance last night as Atletico beat Espanyol in the Copa del Rey.

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