Cristiano Ronaldo Is Leaving Real Madrid and Joining Juventus

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo Power Sport Images/Getty Images

Looking “forward” to a new team! Cristiano Ronaldo is leaving Real Madrid to become the new forward for Juventus F.C. The 33-year-old soccer superstar and Juventus have inked a deal costing the Italian football club around $400 million: around $35 million per year in salary, an equivalent amount in taxes per year, and a transfer fee in the $117 million range, according to ESPN.

The move puts an end to Ronaldo’s nine-year tenure at Real Madrid, during which time he won four Ballon d’Ors and three Golden Boots.

“I only have feelings of enormous gratitude for this club and for this city,” he wrote in an open letter to Real Madrid fans. “I have had nine absolutely wonderful years at the club. Real Madrid has conquered my heart, and that of my family, and that is why more than ever I want to say thank you.”

He continued: “Thank you to the club, the president, the directors, my colleagues, all the staff, doctors, [physiotherapists] and incredible people that make everything work. Thanks to everyone and, of course, as I said that first time in our stadium nine years ago: Hala Madrid!”

Ronaldo requested to be let go from Real Madrid, ESPN reports, but his old employers seem gracious about his departure. “Real Madrid would like to express its gratitude to a player who has[proven] to be the best in the world and who has made this one of the most brilliant times in the history of our club,” the club said in a statement. “Beyond the titles he won during these nine years at the club, Cristiano Ronaldo has also been an example of dedication, work, responsibility, talent and constant improvement.”

Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter to get breaking celebrity news, hot pics and more delivered straight to your inbox!