Real Madrid signs Sneijder
13 August 2007, MADRID - Real Madrid signed Wesley Sneijder from Ajax for EUR 27 million on Monday, the second Dutchman to join the Spanish champions in five days.
13 August 2007
MADRID - Real Madrid signed Wesley Sneijder from Ajax for EUR 27 million on Monday, the second Dutchman to join the Spanish champions in five days.
The 23-year-old Netherlands midfielder agreed to a five-year deal.
"Right now, this is a dream come true. I couldn't ask for more," Sneijder told sports daily As. "I want to play at Real Madrid and I want to succeed. I want to show all Madrid fans who Sneijder is."
Sneijder had attracted interest from Valencia, but Madrid closed the deal two days after Ajax had rejected its initial offer of EUR 24 million.
"I couldn't let the opportunity to play at Real Madrid escape, and that's what I told Ajax - that these chances come along only once in a lifetime and I have to go for it," Sneijder said. "If Ajax hadn't let me go to Madrid, it would have been a big problem."
A product of Ajax's youth academy, the attacking midfielder and free-kick specialist scored 57 goals in 180 matches at the club. Sneijder has also scored six goals in 35 games for the Dutch national team.
"Obviously, we are sad that we have to lose one of our best players ahead of the very important qualifying matches for the Champions League," Ajax technical director Martin van Geel said in a statement. "At the same time, we could not deny Wesley Sneijder this opportunity."
On Thursday, Madrid reportedly paid Feyenoord EUR 14 million to sign Netherlands under-21 defender Royston Drenthe.
The two players will join Dutch striker Ruud van Nistelrooy, who scored a league-high 25 goals last season, at Madrid.
(Copyright AP with Expatica)
Subject: Spanish News