Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has explained the club’s signing of Luis Figo from Barcelona in 2000 was the toughest of his career.
The Portuguese star’s move across the divide of El Clasico in a then-world record €60m move stunned the football world and Perez reflected it was his toughest negotiation.
“I told him that we wanted to build our project around him,” Perez told an interview with Marca.
“Eventually we convinced him but it was not easy, maybe it was my hardest. After all, this was the captain of Barcelona and in 2000 nobody spent €60m!
“Then we signed Zidane, Ronaldo, Beckham…and we created the phenomenon of the Galacticos.
“After this era we tried to follow up with players of the calibre of Cristiano, Kaka, Benzema and Bale: the greatest players help you grow in a sporting context but also economically.
"We now occupy a position in the world that I think we deserve.”