Republic of Ireland international Matt Doherty feels Atletico Madrid are a natural fit for him and is excited by the new challenge after making a surprise transfer to the La Liga side.

Doherty last night agreed to cancel his contract with Tottenham rather than go on loan - to help the Premier League club stay within the maximum number of eight loanees - and the 31-year-old subsequently signed for Atleti on a short-term contract.

"Once I had notification that this was possible it was extremely difficult for me to reject the chance to come over here and play for this club," he told Atletico Madrid's Twitter account.

"I'm very excited. Just from what I've heard from people like [former Spurs and Atletico full-back] Kieran Trippier.

"The way he said that Dicky [Diego Simeone] coaches, the way the players are, he said I'll really enjoy myself here.

"It's going to be very interesting for me to see how they set up in training and seeing the different style of training."

Doherty also referenced a tweet praising Simeone's side after they beat Bayern Munich in the 2016 Champions League semi-final.

"I always remember watching them and having admiration for the way they play," he said.

"Those tweets were real and I meant what I said. Maybe the signs were there from five or six years ago."

Dislodging Argentina right-back Nahuel Molina will be a tough task and Doherty hinted he will have to balance his natural attacking instincts with the demands of Simeone's usual counter-attacking 4-4-2 formation.

"If you look over my career over the last few years, I like to go forward, I like to be involved at both ends of the pitch," he said.

"I like to try and score goals, to help the team with assists. But also I understand that my first job as a defender is to keep clean sheets."

Atletico are currently fourth in the table, 13 points behind leaders Barcelona, and have been eliminated from Europe.

"There are 19 league games left. There's a lot to play for and we want to finish the season as strongly as possible and see where it takes us.

"It's going to be something special [to play in front of the Atletico fans] and I can't wait."