Real Madrid signs midfielder Asier Illarramendi from Real Sociedad

The 23-year-old Illarramendi had a breakout season in the last campaign when he helped Sociedad finish fourth in the Spanish league and earn a Champions League berth.

updated: July 12, 2013 18:56 IST
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Madrid: Real Madrid signed holding midfielder Asier Illarramendi from Real Sociedad on Friday as it intensified its efforts to capture Spain's latest generation of talent.

Sociedad club president Jokin Aperribay said Madrid paid Illarramendi's buyout clause worth 32 million euros ($42 million) plus another 6 million euros ($8 million) in taxes to secure his release.

"I had to think about it a lot, but we arrived to the conclusion that it was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," a tearful Illarramendi said. "It was a difficult decision, but (the offer) was impossible to turn down."

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