Ibanez flattered by talk
By Francisco Acedo
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Atletico Madrid's Pablo Ibanez has admitted his admiration for The Premiership.EXCLUSIVE
Atletico Madrid's in-demand defender Pablo Ibanez has admitted his admiration for The Premiership but insists he is not aware of the reported interest in him.
A host of English clubs (including Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool) are understood to be monitoring the powerful centre back who has made an impressive start to the season.
Ibanez only moved to Atletico in the summer from Albacete but has been a key figure in Los Rojiblancos' solid start to the season which sees them sitting fifth with the best defensive record in La Liga.
The 23-year-old has been linked with a switch to England for around 18 months with Leeds and Manchester City previously having watched him, but his rapid progression has now seen him catch the eye of The Premiership's biggest players.
Ibanez is flattered by the speculation, but claims is he is fully focused on Atletico.
"It (The Premiership) is one of the best leagues in the world and Spanish players are in fashion there at the moment," Ibanez told skysports.com.
"But I'm not going to go mad about what they are saying in the press.
"When I was at Albacete they were saying the same thing and now I'm at Atletico Madrid.
"I know nothing directly and don't want to get distracted from my job.
"All I know is that I belong to Atletico Madrid and the rest, for now, doesn't bother me."
Atletico director of sport Toni Munoz conceded that scouts had been to watch Ibanez in action this season but was adamant that the capital club had no intention of selling the stopper, or striking sensation Fernando Torres who is a target for Chelsea amongst others.
"We have not received an offer for him (Ibanez)," Munoz told skysports.com. "For the time being there is nothing to be said on the matter."