Real selling Robinho to Man City, not Chelsea
Wednesday, 03 September 2008

Brazilian forward RobinhoBy Mark Elkington

MADRID, Sept 1 (Reuters/ - Real Madrid have agreed to sell unsettled Brazilian forward Robinho to Manchester City, the Spanish champions' president Ramon Calderon said on Monday.

"We have agreed to sell the player for human reasons, and for footballing reasons and for an important quantity of money," Calderon told Spanish television station VEO.

"After consulting with the technical staff we have decided it was the best decision for the group and the club. The fact the player accepted the offer from City proves he isn't moving for sporting reasons.

"It isn't Real's policy to sell players but we thought it was for the best."

Spanish media reported Real had agreed to sell the 24-year-old to City for 40 million euros ($58.64 million) after they topped Chelsea's last offer just before the deadline.

Real confirmed an agreement had been reached with City on their website ( but gave no details. Robinho made it clear he wanted to leave for Chelsea just over a week ago, unhappy that the club had considered selling him to help finance their failed bid for Cristiano Ronaldo, and coach Bernd Schuster left him out of the squad for Real's last two matches.

The German had insisted he wanted the player to stay, especially after Real failed to land David Villa from Valencia and Santi Cazorla from Villarreal last week.

But Robinho burned his bridges with another appeal to the media to be allowed to leave on Sunday.

"Schuster thought until yesterday he could recover the player's morale but it wasn't to be. Robinho has been badly advised," Calderon added.


Robinho burst on to the scene as an 18-year-old when he helped Santos win their first Brazilian championship in 2002.  
His trickery, skills and physique led to comparisons with former Santos great Pele and eventually attracted the attention of Real Madrid.

Robinho pressured Santos for a move to Real and after a lengthy tug-of-war transfer saga, the Brazilian club relented and agreed to sell the player to the Spanish giants for $30 million in August 2005.

Classed as the new Galactico when he arrived at the club, Robinho made a dazzling debut as a substitute in the 2-1 victory over Cadiz in the opening game of the season but then went on to struggle for the remainder of his first campaign in Europe.

He won his first Spanish league title under coach Fabio Capello in 2007, but often featured as a substitute and only really took off last season when he helped Real to their second consecutive championship, scoring 11 goals in 32 outings.

Robinho is a regular in the Brazilian national side and played an instrumental role in their triumph in the 2007 Copa America, finishing as the tournament's top scorer with six goals. 

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