Lyon confirm Benzema deal
Lyon have announced that star striker Karim Benzema is to become the latest player to join Real Madrid. The French forward had been linked with Manchester United, but big-spending Real - who have already captured Kaka and Cristiano Ronaldo in record deals - have won the race. Lyon have said the transfer will be worth at least £30million as new Bernabeu president Florentino Perez continues to build a new era of 'galacticos'. A statement on the French club's official website said: "Lyon announces the agreement with Real Madrid of the transfer of international attacker Karim Benzema for a net minimum value of €35m. "It will also be possible to add various no-claims bonuses related to athletic performances, allowing the deal to reach a maximum amount €41m." Preference It was thought that Benzema would remain at Lyon for one more season in order to concentrate on the 2010 World Cup. However, the Ligue 1 outfit have announced that the attacker told the club's hierarchy that he wanted to join Real, who he preferred to United, this summer. The statement continued: "A few days ago, Karim Benzema informed president Jean Michel Aulas of his wish to join Madrid, which has always been his preference after Lyon, quicker than it was initially considered. "The player wished to seize the opportunity that was offered to him by Real, which was to be one of the major elements of the club's new, ambitious policy built around some of the largest players in the world. "Lyon accepted the decision of Karim Benzema and negotiated the conditions of a transfer which satisfy the various elements. "The club wishes Karim the greatest success with Real Madrid."
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