Madrid targets Alonso, ready to sell Huntelaar

Real Madrid is intent on signing Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso but is set to sell striker Klass-Jan Huntelaar.

updated: July 10, 2009 15:53 IST
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Real Madrid is intent on signing Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso but is set to sell striker Klass-Jan Huntelaar.

Madrid director general Jorge Valdano had said the Spanish side wanted to sign more homegrown players and Alonso has been linked to the Santiago Bernabeu since Florentino Perez took over the presidency.

Reports suggest the Premier League club is asking for up to euro50 million ($80 million) for the 27-year-old Spain international.

"Madrid doesn't discard an option until it is truly impossible. Right now there is an insurmountable economic barrier but that's something that can change," Real Madrid sporting director Miguel Pardeza said of Alonso on Friday. "We're looking at alternatives, but there aren't many."

Former Madrid player and current official Emilio Butragueno asked supporters to be patient because more signings would be made, adding that Bayern Munich's Franck Ribery remained a possibility.

Pardeza said that Udinese midfielder Gaetano D'Agostino was a possible alternative, but Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas was not.

"He's a great player, without a doubt. But, at the moment he is not a Real Madrid target," Pardeza said. "The club is working on other ones."

Most of Madrid's squad trained together for the first time Friday since the club spent euro209 million ($290 million) to sign Cristiano Ronaldo, Kaka, Karim Benzema and Raul Albiol.

Huntelaar, who joined Madrid in December, may not be training at the Valdebebas complex much longer after Pardeza said the club was on the verge of selling the 25-year-old Netherlands striker.

Huntelaar has been linked with Stuttgart and Marseilles as Madrid hope to receive euro20 million ($28 million) for him, which would be the same fee Madrid paid Ajax for the player.

Huntelaar scored eight times in 20 appearances for Real Madrid.

"There are negotiations and we're just about at the point where the player needs to make a decision," Pardeza said. "Valdano wants him to be involved in the situation and to decide. The last word will be his."

Madrid hopes to cut its squad after reacquiring Almeria striker Alvaro Negredo and Racing Santander defender Ezequiel Garay.

Fellow Dutch internationals Ruud van Nistelrooy, Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder have all been linked with moves away from the Bernabeu.

Pardeza said that those players who were likely to be sold would know soon enough.

"I think that Jorge is planning to speak with several players so they can be involved," he said.