Jan Oblak signs new Atletico Madrid deal with huge release clause

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Jan Oblak has become one of the world's best goalkeepers at Atletico.

Slovenia goalkeeper Jan Oblak has signed a new contract at Atletico Madrid in a deal that will keep him in the Spanish capital until 2023.

Oblak has risen to become one of the world’s best goalkeepers since joining Atletico in 2014, and has recently been catching the eye of several clubs across Europe.

Manchester United were said to be among the clubs keeping tabs on the 26-year-old as they brace for the possible exit of David De Gea, but the latest development makes it unlikely that Oblak leaves this summer.

According to The Mirror, Oblak’s new contract contains a release clause of €120 million, which would make him the most expensive goalkeeper in history if anyone were to activate that option.

After leaving Benfica in 2014, Oblak has made 203 appearances for Atletico, keeping 115 clean sheets while helping the club win the 2018 Europa League and UEFA Super Cup titles. The club have also usurped Real Madrid in La Liga during Oblak’s tenure, finishing ahead of their city rivals last season and looking likely to repeat the feat in the ongoing campaign, where they are set for a second consecutive second-place finish, albeit yet again far behind leaders and defending league champions Barcelona.

“I’m very happy to have signed a contract extension and to be here. I’m going to defend these colours to the best of my abilities and continue working hard,” Oblak told the club’s official website.

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Real Madrid boss Zidane demands more from players after Leganes draw

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The Real Madrid boss was not a happy man after the 1-1 draw.

Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane declared he and his players had a duty to improve after they were held 1-1 at Leganes.

Jonathan Silva fired Leganes into the lead on the stroke of half-time before Karim Benzema‘s 27th goal of the season in all competitions hauled Real level early in the second period.

It was another lacklustre display from Zidane’s side, who have little left to play for this season, save for a fight with city rivals Atletico Madrid for second place, after being knocked out of the Champions League and Copa del Rey.

“I as the coach and they as the players have to try,” Zidane told a press conference. “We have to try and perform better because it’s our duty.

“We didn’t have a good first half, but improved after the break. We all have to give a bit more.”

Benzema has scored seven goals in Real’s last six league games and Zidane paid tribute to the France striker as speculation mounts over his future.

“Benzema is having a very good season, particularly as far as goals are concerned,” Zidane said. “He’s a fantastic player and this season he’s scoring far more goals. I’m delighted for him.

“He’s used to rumours, but that won’t change anything for him. He’s shown his character and he’s doing a good job for the team.”

Gareth Bale was introduced as an 81st-minute substitute and made little impact.

“Bale is an important player in this squad,” added Zidane, who gave the Wales forward no assurances over his future last week after he had been booed off at the end of Real’s narrow win over Eibar.

“I wanted to make changes today and that’s it. It’s difficult to get into a game when you only play 10 or 15 minutes, but substitutions are made to change the game and we were unable to do that.”

Leganes are unbeaten in their last four games and have moved up three places to 11th in the table, but boss Mauricio Pellegrino is not yet satisfied.

“We will try to do our best until the end of the season,” he told a press conference. “It’s not the same for the club to go 10th and 16th, we’ll go for more.

“The team has been competing well, better and better. We are going from less to more and it is good news for the family of peppers.”

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Real Madrid player ratings as Benzema scores a 7 while Isco gets a 6

Andy West 16/04/2019
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Karim Benzema bagged the equaliser for Real Madrid.

Real Madrid dropped more points with a 1-1 local derby draw at Leganes on Monday night.

Karim Benzema got his team back on level terms after a fine early strike from Jonathan Silva.

Check out our Los Blancos ratings here.

Real Madrid (4-3-3)

Navas 6. Had nothing to do before picking the ball out of his net, and he had no chance with that. Rarely troubled after that.

Carvajal 6. Back from injury and offered a consistent outlet down the right, but rusty with his delivery into the box.

Varane 7. Sharp and decisive, anticipating well to cut out danger including a key last-minute tackle on En-Nesyri.

Nacho 5. Looked vulnerable under Leganes’s long aerial balls into the box, beaten in the air ahead of Leganes’s goal.

Marcelo 6. Rather haphazard with some loose touches, and vulnerable defensively. Came close with a late drive.

Valverde 6. Hard-working and energetic, but not always precise with his distribution. Faded as the game went on.

Casemiro 6. Held his position in front of the back four, steadily helping his team control the centre of the field.

Modric 7. Quiet until setting up the equaliser for Benzema with a great pass and much more influential in the second half.

Modric's influence grew in the second half.

Modric’s influence grew in the second half.

Asensio 6. Could have made more of an early shot and proceeded to have more efforts on goal but lacked a clinical finish.

Isco 6. Pulled the strings with clever passing and had plenty of touches of the ball, with most things going through him.

Benzema 7. Showed some classy touches including another goal, slotting home a rebound, and a through ball for Asensio.

Substitutes

Vazquez 6. Replaced Isco for the final 15 minutes and busied himself with some bright touches down the left.

Bale 4. Came on for Asensio with ten minutes remaining but was practically invisible, making no contribution.

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