Real Madrid have acted on their poor recent form by unveiling their latest big-money signing. France international Lassana Diarra has joined the Spanish club from Premier League side Portsmouth and it is hoped that the midfielder will have a positive affect on their season.
The 23-year-old passed a medical on Monday and has signed a long-term contract that keeps him at the Bernabeu until 2013. The fee for the player is expected to be around £18m, so it is easy to see why Portsmouth couldn’t turn it down.
Speaking about the move, Diarra says that it is an ‘honour’ to be wearing the Real Madrid shirt. Real president Ramon Calderon then claimed that the midfielder will have a ‘great future’ in Spain because he is an ‘exceptional player’.
It has to be said that Calderon is not wrong when he praises the talents of Diarra. He has shown in the few appearances that he has made for Portsmouth that he is a player of pure class and one that should suit the leap in standard. His ability on the ball is superb and he reminds me of a Real Madrid legend from the past – Claude Makelele.
It would be money well spent for Juande Ramos should Diarra manage to emulate the performances of his fellow Frenchman. Despite selling Makelele to Chelsea a number of years ago, many argue that he has never been replaced. Perhaps this is no longer the case.
This is a lot of weight on Diarra’s shoulders, but I would place a football bet on the fact that he is prepared for the challenge ahead. He is a very ambitious individual, after all. In an era of football where many players are happy to sit on the sidelines, Diarra is desperate to play football and make the most of his career.
When he wasn’t getting a game at Chelsea, he decided to move to Arsenal. When he wasn’t getting a game at Arsenal, he moved to Portsmouth. It was a smaller club, but he knew that he would be playing football every week. He also knew that it was a chance to show his talents to the big clubs, like Madrid, around the world.
One thing I will express a slight concern about it why didn’t it work out for Diarra at Chelsea or Arsenal? Arsene Wenger in particular normally keeps faith with youngsters, but for some reason he was happy to move Diarra on. Perhaps there was a personality clash between the two?
That is all in the past now though and Diarra must focus on improving Madrid’s league position. The Spanish giants currently sit 5th in the league after a run of three defeats in their last four games. Ramos did record a victory in his first home game against Valencia though and Diarra will be hoping that this will be the start of better fortunes for his new team.
By Thomas Rooney – A sports writer who blogs about football betting