Monday, September 2, 2013

Real Madrid buys Gareth Bale in world record transfer

It's now official: Gareth Bale joins Real Madrid. Real Madrid announced last Sunday that Gareth Bale had joined them on a six-year contract, and a person familiar with the deal said the fee was a whooping 100 million euros ($132 million), a world record of course. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because financial details are yet to be disclosed.

Bale will have his parade at Madrid's stadium on Monday after his medical examination. Tottenham manager Andre Villas-Boas said earlier in the week that Bale's move was set to be "the biggest transfer in history of world football," and the fee eclipses the 93 million euro Madrid paid by Manchester United for Cristiano Ronaldo in 2009. 

Madrid, whose annual revenue reaches 500 million euro, previously broke the transfer record in 2009 when Kaka joined from AC Milan for 65 million euros ($92 million). All three blockbuster deals were made under Florentino Perez, the Real Madrid president who built the "Galacticos" team which included David Beckham, Zinedine Zidane and Figo. 

The move for Bale, who had around three years remaining on his Tottenham contract, caps a rapid rise from White Hart Lane misfit to one of European football's most exciting players. The 24-year-old Welsh winger has dazzled audiences around the world with swerving free kicks, defense-splitting surges and mesmerizing footwork. 

But Bale was frustrated that Tottenham only qualified once for the Champions League, the stage where the world took notice of his talents for the first time in the 2010-11 season. Now he's joining a club that has won the European Cup nine times. 

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