Albiol set to swap Valencia for Madrid

Real Madrid CF have agreed a reported €15m deal with Valencia CF for the services of Raúl Albiol, with the Spanish international defender, 23, set to sign a five-year contract with Los Merengues.

Raúl Albiol in action for Valencia
Raúl Albiol in action for Valencia ©Getty Images

Real Madrid CF have agreed a reported €15m deal with Valencia CF for the services of Spanish international defender Raúl Albiol.

New signings
The 23-year-old will undergo a medical with Los Merengues following Spain's FIFA Confederations Cup exit before putting pen-to-paper on a contract tying him to the nine-time European Champions Clubs' Cup winners until 2014. The centre-back becomes the third high-profile arrival at the Santiago Bernabéu this summer, following coach Manuel Pellegrini and Brazilian playmaker Kaká for a reported €68m. Cristiano Ronaldo is also poised to set seal on his €94m move from Manchester United FC.

Speedy recovery
Albiol came through the ranks at Valencia yet his career was almost brought to an abrupt end prior to the 2004/05 season when he was involved in a horrific car crash while on his way to sign a loan deal with Getafe CF. After a four-month recovery he went on to make 17 appearances for the Madrid-based team before returning to Valencia where over the next four seasons he won the Copa del Rey and scored five goals in 131 Liga games. A UEFA EURO 2008™ winner with Spain, Albiol has collected 14 international caps for La Roja. Real Madrid will enter the 2009/10 UEFA Champions League at the group stage.

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