Sporting Lisbon has signed Brazil midfielder Elias from Atletico Madrid for a club record fee of ?8.85 million ($12.8 million).

The Portuguese club said in a statement to the Lisbon stock exchange late Tuesday that the midfielder signed a five-year contract that includes a ?40 million ($58 million) release clause.

The 26-year-old has featured for the Spanish club in the Europa League this season, making him ineligible for Sporting in the tournament.

Sporting has spent ?28.75 million ($41.5 million) on players for the new season. However, it has made a miserable start under new coach Domingos Paciencia, drawing two and losing one in its first three league matches.

Sporting last won the Portuguese title in 2002.