Everton sign Real Madrid midfielder Rodriguez on two-year deal

Everton have signed Real Madrid's James Rodriguez seen here dribbling past Mallorca's Salva Sevilla
Everton have signed Real Madrid's James Rodriguez seen here dribbling past Mallorca's Salva Sevilla
Image: REUTERS/Javier Barbancho

Everton have signed midfielder James Rodriguez from La Liga champions Real Madrid on a two-year contract, the Premier League club said as the Colombian bids to revive his career in England.

Financial details of the deal were not disclosed but British media reported that Everton paid around 20 million pounds ($26.33 million) for the 29-year-old who had a year left on his contract with the Spanish side.

"I'm really, really happy to be at this great club, a club with so much history, and here with a manager who knows me really well," James told the club's website.

"I'm looking forward to achieving great things here – and winning things, which is what everyone's aim is. I've come here to try to improve, to get better. I've also come here to help the team to win, to play good football – entertaining football."

Rodriguez scored 37 goals and provided 42 assists across two spells at Real Madrid after joining the Spanish side on the back of stellar performances at the 2014 World Cup - where he won the Golden Boot with six goals.

However, he struggled to live up to his 80 million euros ($94.50 million) price tag and failed to nail down a regular spot in the starting line-up at the Bernabeu. He was loaned out to Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich in 2017 for two seasons.

Rodriguez returned for a second spell at Real in July last year but the Colombian found himself on the fringes of the first team yet again, starting only five league games under Zinedine Zidane.

At Everton, Rodriguez will be reunited with manager Carlo Ancelotti having previously played and thrived under the Italian at Real.

"James ... is a fantastic player with a lot of quality and a lot of ability to make assists for the strikers," Ancelotti said.

"He was really excited to sign and I didn't spend time to convince him - he was already convinced."

Rodriguez is Everton's second major signing in the close-season following the arrival of Brazilian midfielder Allan from Napoli.

Everton finished 12th last term and begin their new Premier League campaign with a trip to Tottenham Hotspur on Sunday.

Newcastle United have boosted their attacking options by signing England striker Callum Wilson on a four-year deal and Scotland winger Ryan Fraser for five years.

The Premier League club did not disclose the fee for Wilson but British media reported that the 28-year-old cost around 20 million pounds ($26.30 million). Fraser was a free transfer.

Wilson scored 67 goals and had 30 assists in 187 games for Bournemouth after his arrival from Coventry City in 2014 and was a transfer target in the close season after the south-coast club were relegated to the second-tier Championship.

"From the minute I knew that Newcastle were interested, it was definitely something that appealed to me," Wilson told the club website.

"It's a massive club with great history. Along the years, they've had great strikers so if I can emulate half of what they've done, I'd like to attempt that."

Fraser left Bournemouth at the end of his contract in June after he opted against a short-term extension on the league's restart following the hiatus due to the novel coronavirus.

The 26-year-old, who joined Bournemouth from Aberdeen in 2013, scored 24 goals and had 33 assists for Bournemouth in seven seasons.

"I'm absolutely buzzing for it. I came down to see the place the other day and it was all just good things; the manager (Steve Bruce), the place, the fans," Fraser said.

"It was just a no-brainer, really, to play in such a big stadium with such passionate fans and being back up in the north again is big as well."

Newcastle finished 13th last term and begin the new Premier League campaign at West Ham United on Saturday.

- Reuters


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