Diego Simeone has denied rumours that he is set to bring an end to his nine-year reign as Atletico Madrid manager at the end of the season.
The Argentine has been in charge of Atletico since 2011, overseeing their growth into one of the dominant forces in Spanish football and leading them to two Champions League finals and winning the Europa League twice.
However, after losing several stars like Antoine Griezmann, Diego Godin and Lucas Hernandez over the summer, Simeone has struggled to inspire the same kind of form from his team this year, with the club now languishing in sixth place in La Liga.
Simeone has frequently been linked with a Premier League job, with the current vacancies at Arsenal and Everton potentially of interest, should either club be willing to wait until the end of the season.
He has also been suggested as a candidate for the Manchester United job should Ole Gunnar Solskjaer be dismissed.
However, the 49-year-old tactician says he is used to the “speculation” amid talk he has lost the dressing room at the Wanda Metropolitano.
“In the eight years that I have been here, it has been said that the group was not with me every year,” he said.
“There is always a moment of speculation. However, we move forward with patience and lots of energy.
“I don’t think there has been more criticism than in other seasons.
“The responsibility I have is a lot. I assume it and share it with players, club, people who work in the dressing room.
“We all have responsibility – mine is important, I assume it and I look for solutions so that everything returns to the best situation, which is to win. When you win, everything looks much better.
“Change will come and, instead of hitting the post, the ball will go in. We have to stay patient and know that we’re in a year of transition.”
Arsenal had already seen one of their top targets to replace Unai Emery on a permanent basis slip through the net, with Brendan Rodgers signing a new contract through until 2025 at Leicester City to fend off the Gunners’ interest. Read the full story here.