Lyon, 1st July 2009
OL Groupe has reached an agreement with Real Madrid on the transfer of international striker Karim Benzema for a minimum of ¤35 million, plus various earn-outs related to the player's performance, which could lift the total amount of the transfer to ¤41 million.
A few days ago, Karim Benzema informed Jean-Michel Aulas, Chairman of OL Groupe, that he wished to join Real Madrid, his preferred club after Olympique Lyonnais, sooner than he had originally planned.
Benzema wished to seize the opportunity that the Spanish club offered him to be one of the major elements of its ambitious new strategy to attract some of the world's star players.
Olympique Lyonnais has accepted Benzema's decision and negotiated transfer terms satisfactory to all parties involved.
The club wishes Karim every success with Real Madrid, which, in pursuit of its ambitious plans on the pitch, benefits from advantages in legislation (e.g. sponsoring and online betting with Bwin), taxation (more favourable tax status for players abroad) and property ownership (a privately-owned, value-generating stadium) that are incomparable with the situation currently prevailing in French professional sports.
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