A key man for club and country, Diego Forlan has well and truly put the nightmare form that blighted his initial arrival in Europe behind him, and has cemented his reputation as one of the continent's most prolific goalscorers in recent years. His rise to prominence culminated in an annus mirabilis in 2010, as he scored a match-winning brace to win the Europa League for Atletico Madrid, before spearheading Uruguay's surprise run to the World Cup semi-finals.
He received his footballing education in Penarol's junior teams, but at the age of 17 moved to Argentina's Independiente. It was here he made his name, prompting Manchester United to buy him for £6.9 million. He lasted only a little longer than two seasons at Old Trafford, though, as he struggled with to find his best form under the pressure of playing for Sir Alex Ferguson''s side. Despite the spell representing the least prolific of his career, he is remebered fondly by United fans for a memorable match-winning brace against Liverpool at Anfield.
Forlan's fortunes changed as he signed for La Liga side Villarreal, where he began to score regularly - becoming La Liga's top scorer in 2004-05. This prompted Atletico Madrid to buy him, and Forlan has justified their faith by continuing to be a score at a prolific rate. He was once again the Pichichi in 2008-09 after netting 32 goals and scored both goals as Atletico Madrid beat Fulham 2-1 in the 2010 Europa League final.
Forlan has sometimes come under criticism in his native Uruguay for his international performances, but he has still managed 29 goals in 71 international games. And he finally silenced the critics at the 2010 World Cup, pulling the strings and scoring the goals - five of them - as he captained Uruguay to an unexpected fourth-placed finish and then the Copa America trophy a year later.
His exploits then earned him a move to Inter Milan in the summer of 2011 where he replaced the Anzhi-bound Samuel Eto'o.
Strengths: A lethal finisher with either foot, Forlan is also capable of the spectacular and his excellent work-rate marks him out as a rare striker, who is both a ruthless predator and a team player.
Weaknesses: Has been known to have lapses in concentration that have cost him goalscoring opporutnities, but the mistakes have become rarer as Forlan has got older. May have to tone down the amount of off-the-ball running he does if he wants to prolong his career.
Career high: Winning the 2010 World Cup Golden Ball, awarded to the tournament's best player.
Career low: Failing to make the grade at Manchester United, despite scoring a handful of important goals.
Style: Cool-headed, tireless, hard-working, a prolific goalscorer.
Quotes: "The Uruguayan wrote his name in the annals of the Rojiblancos. He became immortal in Hamburg. Forlan was Neptune, the God of the European seas and chief of the Rojiblancos family." Forlan is lauded by Spanish daily Marca after the 2010 Europa League final.
Trivia: Son of former footballer Pablo Forlan and grandson of Juan Carlos Corazo, Uruguayan coach in the 1962 World Cup. Was a promising tennis player in his youth, only turning to football after the death of his sister in a car accident.
SPANISH PRIMERA DIVISIÓN