Mariano Bombarda finally put his signature to a contract Wednesday that keeps him at Feyenoord until 2004. The Spanish-born Argentinian is seen as the ideal player to break open stubborn defences. The striker has already successfully undergone a medical and is likely to get his first runout in a Feyenoord shirt for the reserves Thursday. ‘I was in Spain, where I was looking to start a hotel, then Feyenoord called.’

‘Feyenoord is a fantastic club, with wonderful supporters. The best of the three top clubs. A real club of the people, which suits me I think. The Feyenoord style of playing also agrees with me,’ Bombarda explained. The striker’s return to the Eredivisie is a big surprise. He left Willem II at the end of last season after failing to secure anything better than a one-year deal, but admitted to feeling the need to return during the summer. ‘I told my agent that I would be interested if a good club came in.’ That club was Feyenoord, after the departure of Johan Elmander on loan to Djurgården. The striker looks like a good acquisition. His style is ideally suited to matches in which the opposition masses ranks behind the ball. ‘A lot of defenders concentrate on Pierre, with me alongside him they will have to choose. I can also hold the ball up and create space.’ As if a return to the professional game in the Netherlands isn’t enough, the Spanish-Argentinian can also look forward to a second bite at the Champions League cherry. ‘I played a couple of non-too successful games in it for Willem II. Anyway, I’ll be waiting for Thursday’s draw with anticipation. It doesn’t matter who we play, as long as we get enough points to take us through to the next round.’ Mariano himself was clearly surprised about the huge interest from the press when he was presented as Feyenoord’s newest purchase. ‘At my last club Willem II the attention we got was obviously a lot less. But I know I’m at a top club now. I cam handle any pressure from the media.’
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