SPANISH full-back Diego Rico has completed a return to his homeland after agreeing a deal to join Real Sociedad. 

The 28-year-old has joined the La Liga outfit on a permanent deal for an undisclosed fee, signing a two-year contract.

The Daily Echo on Sunday confirmed talks were ongoing regarding the Burgos-born left-back and he has now completed his move. 

Rico arrived at Cherries from Leganes for a fee of £10.7million in the summer of 2018.

He played under three different managers at Cherries, signed by Eddie Howe before going on to feature with Jason Tindall and Jonathan Woodgate at the helm during the last campaign.

The Spaniard travelled with the rest of the squad for a training camp in Marbella with new boss Scott Parker earlier this month, but did not feature during either of the club's two friendlies, against Real Balompedica Linense or Granada.

He was understood to be nursing a slight injury during the team's time in Spain.

Rico made 83 appearances for Cherries, most recently the play-off semi-final second-leg loss at Brentford in May.

His only goal for the club came via a free-kick in a 4-0 win at Barnsley in December 2020.

Rico joins a Real Sociedad side which finished fifth in the Spanish top flight last season - meaning he could play in the Europa League.

He is set to compete with former Arsenal and Spain defender Nacho Monreal for a starting spot with Imanol Alguacil's side.

Cherries are now likely to make a move to sign a defender to replace Rico. The Daily Echo understands they retain an interest in Leeds United's Leif Davis.