Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Ronaldo deal for Real, says Spanish media

Cristiano Ronaldo

Manchester United and Portugal star Cristiano Ronaldo, freshly named FIFA World Footballer of the Year, will join Real Madrid in the summer for 85 million euros ($A167.5 million) despite his denials, Spanish media insisted on Tuesday.

AS sports daily, which is close to Real, has repeatedly said Ronaldo will soon wind up at the Bernabeu and insisted club president Ramon Calderon had concluded a secret pact with the 23-year-old and his agent Jorge Mendes.

Real tracked Ronaldo all of last summer following his Champions League and English Premiership triumphs and 42 goals before United boss Sir Alex Ferguson stepped in and emphatically vetoed his departure.

But AS say Real would shell out 85 million euros ($A167.5 million) and pay him 1 million euros ($A1.97 million) a month, as well as 8 million ($A15.77 million) commission to Mendes.

Earlier this month Ronaldo stressed anew he was happy to stay put despite having spent the summer appearing to angle for a move to Spain.

In receiving his latest prize on Monday in Zurich he underlined his good relationship with Sir Alex, who has spoken out - sometimes in vitriolic fashion - against Real's dogged pursuit of his man.

"It was a great season for me and for my club and the coach was important for me because I learned a lot from him.

"His experience over so many years is of paramount importance - it's a privilege to have such a great club manager," he stressed.

Ronaldo, who is under contract with United until 2012, on Monday told Spanish television he was learning Spanish.

Already holder of the prestigious Ballon d'Or for the European Footballer of the Year, he beat off 2007 winner Kaka (Brazil), Lionel Messi (Argentina), Fernando Torres (Spain) and Xavi (Spain) to land the FIFA award, which he dubbed "an overwhelming moment in my career".


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