Vietto's new destination

The Argentine scored his only goal for Atlético in the league to tie a derby at Calderón against Real Madrid. Today he is a member of the exotic Al Hilal.


Luciano Vietto has lived a hectic career full of ups and downs. The Argentine forward exploded very soon, aroused the interest of multiple European teams after his first steps in the Argentine top flight and ended up signing for Atlético after a brilliant year at Villarreal. But as a rojiblanco, his career came to a halt. After linking assignments (Seville, Valencia and Fulham) and leaving for Sporting de Portugal in 'Operation Gelson', today he plays for Al Hilal of Saudi Arabia with only 27 years.

But let's go back to the beginning. Vietto had his year of explosion in the 2012-13 season, when at the age of 19 he began to excel in Racing and began to show great forcefulness in front of door despite his light physique. A natural dribbler, highly technical, who scored 13 goals in 33 games in his first full season in the first team. In the next game, his figures fell, but he kept the interest of big European teams, including Atlético. Simeone already confessed at that time that there were two players in Argentina that he liked a lot: Luciano Vietto and Ángel Correa.

The second arrived at the club, but in the case of the first Villarreal went ahead. And he could not have a more spectacular landing in Spain. 20 goals in 48 games in the 2014-15 season to reveal himself as one of the great South American promises. Vietto scored 12 goals in the league, one of them dribbling Godín and beating Moyá to give Villarreal victory at the Vicente Calderón. In addition, he would score eight goals in the Europa League to lead Atlético to invest 20 million in his services. But from rojiblanco that brightness stopped. From the first day of preseason, Vietto realized that at Atlético he was going to suffer. The physical deployment of the team contrasted with its characteristics and it took a lot for him to get into the team. Only three goals in the 28 games in which he participated in the 2015-16 season, when he ended up playing only 54 minutes in the last 12 games that he was called up.

Vietto went from 12 league goals to one, but very special. In the derby, against Real Madrid in a play started by Jackson Martínez, another of the forwards who never caught on, took advantage of a loose ball from Keylor Navas to score the equalizer. It would also mark Reus in the Cup and Benfica in the Champions League. In addition, to his credit was the assistance for goal 100 by Fernando Torres at Atlético. He would have minutes as rojiblanco again in the 2017-18 season, after having grown during his assignment at Sevilla (10 goals in 31 games) .

But the tables did not turn. He played ten games without scoring before going on loan to Valencia in January, where in the second game he scored a hat-trick in the Cup against Las Palmas that awakened the illusion of the fans. But only two more goals would come before heading to the Premier League at Fulham, where he only made one goal. Vietto's career was going downhill, after not finding the sensations of his first year in Europe again. Finally, he entered the operation with which Atlético retained the services of Gelson Martins after Sporting's complaint, before transferring him to Monaco.

In Portugal, a somewhat more refined Vietto was seen, but in November 2020 the Argentine decided to change of scene, to turn his career away from the footballing focus, but with unbeatable emoluments in Europe. At the age of 27, he headed to Al Hilal in Saudi Arabia, where he is currently active. What's more, last Sunday he scored his second league goal. A footballer who had a huge impact at Villarreal, but never met those expectations of a dribbler and finisher in front of goal. At Atlético it happened with more pain than glory, but he scored a goal to remember in an entire derby, a game that always leaves its mark on the fans.

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