Eric Abidal signs three-year contract with Monaco

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French international Eric Abidal has rejoined Monaco on a three-year contract.

The 33-year-old - who underwent a liver transplant in 2012 - will return to his first professional club for the start of the 2013/2014 Ligue 1 season.

Abidal made his playing comeback in April after his health problems and was then released by Spanish champions Barcelona at the end of last season after six years of service.

An emotional Abidal told the official club website: "It's very emotional, it's huge. After what I've been through, it wasn't easy to find a club with confidence in me."

Abidal - who can operate at left-back or centre-back - has already featured for three French clubs during his career, starting off at Monaco, before later playing for Lille and hometown club Lyon - where he won three league titles in as many seasons.

Abidal joined the Catalan giants in 2007 from Lyon but struggled with injuries and serious health problems while at the club.

He was first diagnosed with a liver tumour and in March of that year underwent an operation to remove it, remarkably returning to the team two months later to lift the European Cup after beating Manchester United in the final at Wembley.

He then underwent his most recent transplant in 2012, with part of the organ donated by his cousin.

Abidal's new side have made no secret of their desire to strengthen the squad significantly this summer, splashing out a reported £50million for Colombian striker Radamel Falcao from Atletico Madrid.

Along with Abidal, the newly-promoted side have also tied up deals for French international France international Jeremy Toulalan, Porto duo James Rodriguez and Joao Moutinho and Real Madrid defender Ricardo Carvalho.


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