Berlin - Charles Aranguiz says a positive appraisal of Bayer
Leverkusen by Arturo Vidal convinced him to sign for the Bundesliga side and
join his Chile international team-mate in Germany's top flight.
Leverkusen announced on Thursday that Aranguiz has signed a
The 26-year-old has won 40 caps for Chile and was part of
the team which won the Copa America last month by beating Argentina on
penalties in the final.
The defensive midfielder scored twice in a 5-0 group win
against Bolivia before netting in the penalty shootout victory over Argentina
and Leverkusen are reported to have spent 12 million euros (US$13.3m) on him.
He has signed from Brazilian club Internacional, who reached
the semi-finals of South America's Copa Libertadores last season.
Also read: Bayern confirm Vidal switch from Juventus
Aranguiz hopes to play in the European equivalent, the
Champions League, if Bayer Leverkusen beat Lazio over two legs in their
play-off tie for a place in the group stages.
Bayern Munich's ex-Juventus star Vidal spent five years with
Bayer from 2007-11 and he convinced Aranguiz to sign for Leverkusen.
"The Bundesliga is one of the best and most attractive
leagues in the world and Bayer has been out of the top teams for many years,"
"My national team-mate Arturo Vidal has raved about
Bayer 04, so I definitely wanted to go to this club.
"In addition, this is a great opportunity to play
Champions League football with Leverkusen.
"They almost always qualified for it in previous years
and we want to do that again this time.
"I am looking forward to the big challenge of playing
in another country."
Aranguiz will slot into the defensive midfield alongside
Germany international Christoph Kramer in a new-look Leverkusen midfield with
Gonzalo Castro having joined Borussia Dortmund, Simon Rolfes has retired and
Stefan Reinartz has joined Eintracht Frankfurt.
Premier League side Leicester City were also reported to
have been interested in signing him.
"We are happy that our perseverance has paid off with
Charles Aranguiz having chosen to join us," said Leverkusen's managing
director Michael Schade.
"Our efforts to sign him weren't made any easier by his
exceptional performances for his club and country, so it's all the better that
we were able to prevail against strong international competition."For
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