James Rodriguez the Real deal for Madrid
Colombian striker and World Cup Golden Boot winner moves from Monaco for €80 million fee
Real Madrid have agreed to sign Colombia forward James Rodriguez from Monaco on a six-year deal, the Spanish club have announced. Photograph: Mike Egerton/PA Wire.
Neither club have confirmed the fee for the 23-year-old, but reports suggest Madrid have paid in the region of €80 million (£63million), which would make Rodriguez the fourth most expensive transfer of all time after Gareth Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo and Luis Suarez.
A Real Madrid statement read: “Real Madrid have reached an agreement with Monaco for the transfer of James Rodriguez, who will join the club for the next six seasons.
“The player will be presented today, at 20:00 (Spanish time), in the Santiago Bernabeu’s presidential box.
“Following that, James Rodriguez will take his first steps on the Santiago Bernabeu’s pitch wearing the Real Madrid shirt and will attend the media in the press room.”
Rodriguez was one of the revelations of the World Cup, scoring in each of Colombia’s games as they reached the quarter-finals of the competition for the very first time, eventually losing 2-1 to hosts Brazil.
In total Rodriguez scored six goals at the World Cup to finish as the leading scorer — one clear of Thomas Muller — while his stunning 25-yard volley against Uruguay was voted goal of the tournament on FIFA.com.
It also means that, if the reported figure is correct, Madrid now boast three of the four most expensive signings in history, the others being Gareth Bale last summer and Ronaldo in 2009.
The Champions League winners would hold a clean sweep of the top three signings but for arch-rivals Barcelona, who splashed out a reported €90 million on on Liverpool striker Luis Suarez earlier this summer.
Rodriguez began his professional career with Colombian side Envigado before moving down to Argentinian club Banfield aged 17.
His performances for the Buenos Aires outfit attracted the attention of Porto, who signed him for £4million (€5,064,800) in 2010, and three years later he joined Monaco for £38.5million (€48,744,850) after helping the Portuguese side win a hat-trick of league titles and the 2011 Europa League.
The left-footed forward scored 10 goals in 38 matches in all competitions for Monaco last term as they finished second in Ligue 1 behind Paris St Germain.
Big-spending Monaco said they had not been looking to sell Rodriguez but described the deal as “one of the most significant transfers in football history”.
A statement on www.asm-fc.com read: “The club would like to take the opportunity to thank James for the role he played in getting the club back to the Champions League and wishes him the very best for the future.
“The club had no intention to sell the player, however the time came when the solution of a transfer was considered to be the most beneficial solution for all parties.
“Monaco is proud to be a party to one of the most significant transfers in football history.
“Monaco is a club that will continue to grow and remains focused on the future. More than ever it has the ambition to strengthen the team and continue to progress for next season.”