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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Dec 22, 2006

Real signing Gago like winning lottery - Calderon

MADRID, Dec 22 (Reuters) - Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon said the signing of Argentine midfielder Fernando Gago was like winning the lottery.

The 20-year-old passed a medical and completed his $27 million move from Boca Juniors to Real, putting pen to paper on a six-and-a-half year contract.

'Today is the draw for the (Spain's famous Christmas) lottery, yet we have already won. Our prize is right here,' Calderon said on Friday as Gago was presented to the media.

'It hasn't been easy to bring him here. But I would like to thank him for giving up a large amount of money to choose us, when so many others wanted his services.'

Gago joins teenage Argentine striker Gonzalo Higuain, and Brazilian fullback Marcelo as the club's recent new signings, as the nine-times European champions look to rejuvenate their squad.

'This trio of aces, along with the players emerging from the youth teams, allow us to take a step towards a new generation of players who will bring freshness and new hope to the fans,' Calderon added.

'By combining veterans with youth we will put this club back on the road to success.'

Gago has been likened to Argentine midfielder Fernando Redondo who played with Real between 1994 and 2000, but the youngster wanted to distance himself from these comparisons.

'I don't feel under any pressure being likened to Redondo. He is my idol and has been since I was young, but we are very different players,' said a softly-spoken Gago.

'I know I will have to adapt to a different style of play here but I will do it calmly and patiently like I did at Boca.

'This is the club of my dreams and I want to achieve great things here and to be a success in European football.'

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