Atletico Madrid sign Czech defender Ujfalusi

July 1, 2008

MADRID, July 1 (Reuters) - Atletico Madrid have signed experienced Czech Republic defender Tomas Ujfalusi on a three-year contract, the Primera Liga club said on Tuesday.

The 30-year-old international arrives as a free agent after playing the last four seasons with Serie A's Fiorentina.

The powerful centre back captained the Czech team at Euro 2008 but his side failed to qualify from Group A after losing to Turkey 3-2 in their last match.

Ujfalusi will help to strengthen the Atletico backline after they finished fourth in the Primera Liga last season to earn a place in the third qualifying round of the Champions League for next year.

He joins Netherlands defender John Heitinga as a new recruit at the Calderon.

Atletico are also seeking to land French striker Florent Sinama Pongolle from Recreativo Huelva, France goalkeeper Gregory Coupet from Olympique Lyon and Brazil striker Ricardo Oliveira from Real Zaragoza.