Cristiano Ronaldo is poised to start life as a Real Madrid player next week after the Spanish giants finalised his world record transfer from Manchester United. Just over two weeks after United confirmed they had accepted an £80 million (Dh485m) bid from Madrid for the Portugal winger, both clubs announced they had put the finishing touches on his switch to the Bernabeu. Although there was no reference to an agreement over personal terms with Ronaldo, Madrid, who have been in talks with the player's representatives for the last fortnight, said the 24-year-old's contract will run until 2015 and that he will be presented at the start of next month. Reports in the Spanish media claim the former Sporting Lisbon player will be paid around ?13m (Dh67m) a year. A statement on Madrid's website, www.realmadrid.com, last night read: "Real Madrid and Manchester United have signed a final agreement for the transfer of the rights of Cristiano Ronaldo from July 1. "The player will be tied to Real Madrid for the next six seasons and will be presented on July 6 at the Santiago Bernabeu."
Barcelona midfielder Xavi views Real Madrid's massive summer spending spree as a positive thing - both for La Liga and for the Catalan giants. Along with Ronaldo, Real have also added the Brazilian playmaker Kaka and defender Raul Albiol to their squad this summer. The nine-time European champions are unlikely to stop at those three signings either, with a host of players being linked to the club every day in the media. It promises to be an interesting time at the Bernabeu next season, and far from being concerned by Madrid's massive investment, Xavi believes it is a positive thing. "It is good for Real Madrid, for the level of the league and even for Barcelona, as it will demand even more from us," Xavi told Marca.
* PA Sport