Sources: Atletico close to signing Kondogbia

Midfielder Geoffrey Kondogbia is close to joining Atletico Madrid, sources have told ESPN.

The club have agreed a deal with Valencia which will see them pay €17 million plus variables for the midfielder, who will undergo a medical on Sunday.

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Atletico targeted Kondogbia to replace Thomas Partey, who joined Arsenal on transfer deadline day after the Premier League club paid his buyout clause.

Coach Diego Simeone had wanted to add a dominant, box-to-box player in midfield to compensate for the loss of the Ghana international.

Under La Liga rules, Atletico were granted an extra 30 days outside the transfer window to sign a replacement for Partey, as his release clause had been paid.

Kondogbia, 27, had been promised that he would be allowed to leave Valencia by club president Anil Murthy, after a number of their best players — including Dani Parejo, Rodrigo and Ferran Torres — departed Mestalla this summer.

Earlier this month, the French midfielder accused the club of failing to honour their word, posting a message on Instagram which read: “After having destroyed an ambitious project, you had to mislead your coach and, finally, me. Thank you Anil Murthy.”

Kondogbia joined Valencia in 2017, having previously impressed at Sevilla before spells at Monaco and Inter Milan.