(Bloomberg) -- Spanish soccer giant Real Madrid Football Club agreed to transfer five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus Football Club SpA following a request from the player to leave. Speculation of a deal had sent the Italian club’s stock soaring over the past week.
Juventus will pay 100 million euros ($117.3 million) and another 12 million euros in additional fees to sign the player on a four-year contract, it said in a statement. Juventus didn’t disclose terms of Ronaldo’s contract.
“The right moment to open a new chapter in my life has arrived,” the 33-year-old said in a letter to fans posted on the Real Madrid website. Real “will always be his home” and the record goal-scorer will remain a great symbol of the club for future generations, Real Madrid commented in a statement.
Ronaldo scored 451 goals in 438 games since he joined in 2009, helping the club to win four Champions League titles, and La Liga, Spain’s top soccer division, twice.
The fee tops the 80 million pounds ($106.1 million) Real Madrid paid Manchester United for the Portuguese star, and while it could be deemed high for a player entering latter stages of their career, Ronaldo’s marketing power means the deal is a coup for Juventus.
The Turin team that’s controlled by Italy’s Agnelli family -- the biggest investors in carmaker Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV -- has won a record seven consecutive Serie A championships. The club’s share price has risen about 35 percent since talk of a deal first surfaced last week.
Also the UEFA Champions League’s all-time top scorer, Ronaldo earned $61 million dollars in salary and bonuses last year, plus an extra $47 million via endorsements, according to Forbes, making him the third-highest paid athlete in the world behind FC Barcelona star Lionel Messi and American boxer Floyd Mayweather.
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