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English Premiership

Alonso heads to the Bernabeau

LIVERPOOL, July 5 – Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso is set to join Real Madrid after the Premier League club announced on Tuesday that they have agreed a transfer fee with the Spanish team.XABI_ALONSOReal had been engaged in lengthy negotiations over a deal for Alonso in the last few days as Anfield boss Rafa Benitez demanded 30 million pounds (50.8 million dollars) for the former Real Sociedad star.

But Alonso made it clear he wanted a transfer and Benitez has finally accepted an offer of around that amount from Real.

"Liverpool Football Club this evening (Tuesday) confirmed they had reached agreement for the sale of Xabi Alonso to Real Madrid, subject only to a medical," a statement on Liverpool’s website said.

"The terms of the deal will remain confidential and undisclosed."

The 27-year-old, who joined Liverpool in August 2004 and helped win the Champions League in his first season, will become the sixth high-profile signing by the Bernabeu club this close-season once he passes a medical on Wednesday and agrees personal terms.

He is the second Liverpool player to join Real in the last week after Alvaro Arbeloa’s four million pounds switch.

Real’s spending in the last two months is now well over 200 million pounds.

They have already paid a world record fee of 80 million pounds to lure Cristiano Ronaldo from Manchester United. They also splashed out 60 million pounds to sign Brazilian midfielder Kaka from AC Milan, paid 30 million pounds to land France striker Karim Benzema from Lyon and bought Raul Albiol from Valencia.

Benitez is likely to bid for Juventus’s Christian Poulsen or Roma’s Alberto Aquilani as he looks for a replacement for Alonso.

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