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Cristiano Ronaldo was 'cheap' for 80m says Roy Keane
Published : 20 Jul 2009 21:30:09Rss feed
Real Madrid paid United a world-record fee to sign the Portugal winger but Keane said the money involved to take the 24 year-old to Spain was justified. "I'm OK with it," said the Ipswich Town manager. "It's just the way it is. People talk about Ronaldo going for £80 million I look at other players and think Ronaldo's cheap for £80 million." Related ArticlesOwen on target again in United victoryUnited's Foster to stake claim for No 1 jerseyUnited on tourUnited spurn tour pleasUnited sign striker DioufUnited brand grows strongerKeane, whose Ipswich side are in Ireland on a pre-season tour, added: "He's the best player in the world. Footballers are classed as entertainers and if you look at any industry the top people get the top money." Ronaldo's switch to La Liga ended a long pursuit by Real for the World Footballer of the Year. He was strongly linked with a move to the Spanish capital last summer but after a saga in which Sir Alex Ferguson, the United manager, said that he "would not sell that mob a virus", Ronaldo insisted that he was happy at Old Trafford. However, the player continued to send out mixed messages about his future throughout the season and returning Madrid president Florentino Perez, who led the club from 2000 to 2006 during their famous galacticos era, said that he would do "everything possible" to sign Ronaldo. His capture came after Real had already secured the services of Brazilian playmaker Kaka from AC Milan for a reported £56 million. Barcelona president Joan Laporta has defended the club's attempts to sign Zlatan Ibrahimovic and insisted the money involved is not comparable to that splashed out by Real Madrid this summer. Madrid have spent more than €200 million (£173 million) bringing in Ronaldo, Kaka, Karim Benzema and Raul Albiol while so far it has been much quieter at the Nou Camp, where they have only signed Maxwell. Barca are now set to complete their own big-money deal as they have agreed a fee with Inter Milan of €45 million (£39 million) plus Samuel Eto'o for Ibrahimovic. Alexander Hleb will also join Inter on loan. However, Laporta claims the Catalans' transfer policy is still very different to their bitter rivals. "It's a different sort of deal, because it's based around different financial amounts, which are fairly reasonable," he said. "And because it also involves the sale and the loan deal of a player that we were working on before this deal. It's not a very expensive deal." Laporta also revealed that the club had decided to part ways with Eto'o even before he met his Inter counterpart Massimo Moratti. He added: "As a result of a conversation that I had with Eto'o before my meeting with Moratti, we understood that it was time to look for a team for him and 24 hours later the possibility of going to Inter came up. "Eto'o will go to a club where they will also treat him with respect." Reports suggest Eto'o's agent is in talks with Inter and the deal could be completed shortly. Laporta, who confirmed the clubs are set to hold talks with the players, admitted he did not know what would happen if Eto'o decided not to move to the San Siro. Laporta admitted he was at a loss as to why Valencia striker David Villa's move to the Nou Camp collapsed. He said: Incomprehensibly, our offer was not accepted by Valencia. We had information that said that the player had word that, for a determined amount, he could leave the club. "And Barca offered this amount and more. That's why I say 'incomprehensibly'."