Arsenal have lost the battle to sign Colombian striker Jackson Martinez after his agent revealed that he will join La Liga outfit Atletico Madrid.
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The 28-year-old has been heavily linked with a summer move to the Emirates Stadium in recent weeks but it appears the 2013/14 Spanish champions have won the race for the Porto hitman.
Martinez’s representative Luiz Henrique Pompeo told Italian media outlet Calcio Mercato that a deal to take his client to the Vicente Calderon stadium is complete and revealed an offer from Serie A giants AC Milan was rejected:
“We thank Milan and especially (CEO) Adriano Galliani, who did everything possible to take him to the Rossoneri,” he claimed [via Express Sport].
“The player preferred to say yes to Atletico Madrid for the project they built around him.
“The deal is done because I say it is.
“He has already signed on for the next four years and the Spanish club paid the release clause in his contract,” Henrique Pompeo added.
The Colombia international has developed a reputation as one of the most prolific strikers in world football since joining the Portuguese outfit in 2012.
Last season he scored 21 goals in 30 league apperances and was also on fire in the Champions League as he found the back of the net seven times in eight games, including home and away against Bayern Munich at the quarter-final stage.
His imminent move to Atletico mirrors that of his compatriot Radamel Falcao and Martinez will he hoping to have a similar impact in Spain next season.
It is unclear if Arsenal were genuinely interested in Martinez or if his agent was using the club in order to get a better deal elsewhere.
The striker is currently in action for Colombia at the 2015 Copa America in Chile. Los Cafeteros are set to face Argentina in the quarter-finals, having escaped from the group stage as one of the two best third-placed teams. Pooled in Group C alongside Brazil, Peru and Venezuela, Colombia accrued four points, with Martinez having made two substitute outings to date.