Coloccini optimistic about Atletico future
By Nic Evans
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Having returned to the Primera Liga following a two-year absence, los rojiblancos are looking to make an impression on the elite of La Liga in their centenary season in 2002-03.
"Without a doubt, Atletico are one of those teams that are there or thereabouts," said Coloccini.
He added: "Thank God I had the luck to win many things and to play for great teams.
"I could see that Atletico were a good club, at least as good as any Argentine club. It is a club very liked and recognised in my country. I remember when they won the title with Simeone and Biagini.
"I have a great dream. I hope to be able to play my role and give back to the people the confidence they have shown in me.
"I always divide the league into two parts. Until you've got 44 points it is not clear whether you'll stay up. After that, the goal is always to go as high as possible."
Speaking about what the immediate future holds for him, the 20-year-old defender said: "I hope to get to know the squad and coach in pre-season.
"They say to me that he is a very able coach. In addition the pre-season is very important because it is the time to get the physical stage for the entire season."
On his season with Alaves, where Coloccini came to prominence and attracted the interest of a number of European clubs, he added: "The truth is it was a great year for me, when I arrived in Vitoria I had many expectations because it was my first season in Spanish football.
"I've got nice memories.
"There are stars that shine for their national teams and day after day you face them or you have them as team-mates. It surprised me having to mark the likes of Raul and Catanha."