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Monday, Jun 27th

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Argentine attacking midfielder Nico Gaitan has said goodbye to Benfica and its fans after six seasons in the Lisbon club during which he said he has felt supported at all times.

"It's time to say goodbye, they were six fantastic years that I will never forget," said the player in a message posted through social networks from the United States, where he is with the Argentinian national side in its Copa America campaign.

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Atletico de Kolkata (ATK) announced on Monday that they have retained the services of four foreigners - Iain Hume, José Luis Espinosa Arroyo (Tiri), Sameehg Doutie and Ofentse Nato - for the upcoming season of the Indian Super League (ISL).

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There was heartbreak for Atletico Madrid for the third time on the biggest stage of them all, going down 5-3 in a penalty shootout to local rivals Real Madrid, who courtesy of Cristiano Ronaldo's bullet penalty celebrated win the European Cup for a record 11th time.

Two years ago in Lisbon, Atletico led for the better part of the contest before a Sergio Ramos goal in the 93rd minute earned Real an opportunity to take the match into extra time, wherein they eventually romped to a 4-1 triumph.

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An outstanding defensive performance by Atletico Madrid meant that the ever improving Spanish side were able to deny Bayern Munich any goals at the Vicente Calderon, and will in fact take a narrow lead themselves to the Allianz Arena for the second leg of their UEFA Champions League semi-final next Tuesday after Saul Niguez's excellent 11th minute goal gave them a 1-0 win.

There were more than a few surprises in both line-ups with Bayern Munich surprisingly leaving Thomas Muller out of their starting line-up, with coach Pep Guardiola opting to play Kingsley Coman instead down the right flank and Douglas Costa down the left. Arturo Vidal was given a free role behind striker Robert Lewandowski while the Spanish duo of Thiago Alcantara and Xabi Alonso sat in front of the back four.

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A couple of goals from French forward Antoine Griezmann were just about enough to earn Atletico Madrid a place in the UEFA Champions League semi-finals, at the expense of La Liga leaders and defending champions Barcelona, who after going 39 games unbeaten till very recently, suffered their third defeat in recent weeks, including one each at the hands of the two Madrid giants.

Today's loss was all the more crucial for Barcelona as it denied them a place in the semi-finals of the Champions League, despite carrying a 2-1 advantage from the first leg at the Camp Nou.

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The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has sanctioned Spanish clubs Atlético de Madrid and Real Madrid for breaches relating to the international transfer and registration of players under the age of 18.

The two clubs were found to have violated several provisions concerning the international transfer and first registration of minor players as well as other relevant provisions with regard to the registration and participation of certain players in competitions.

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Lionel Messi guided Barcelona to a 2-1 win over Atletico Madrid in their La Liga match at the Vicente Calderon yesterday.

After a goalless first half, which saw Luis Suarez rattling the bar with his effort, Los Rojiblancos went ahead in the 51st minute when Tiago set up Fernando Torres with a superb through ball following a counterattack by his side, with the former Liverpool and Chelsea forward finding the back of the net, beating Marc-Andre ter Stegen in the process.

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