Real Madrid and Real Sociedad have agreed terms on the transfer of Asier Illarramendi, according to ESPN FC. As per the reports, both parties have negotiated a six-year contract in the region of £11m plus add-ons to secure his return to the San Sebastian.
The 25-year-old midfielder joined Los Blancos in 2013 and made 90 appearances overall, scoring three goals in his short spell with the capital club. The Spaniard was told he was not in the plans of newly hired Real Madrid manager Rafael Benitez. Sociedad manager David Moyes beat off competitions from Tottenham and Liverpool to seal the signature with £17 million less than they sold him for two years ago.
With the confirmation of his transfer, he now joins the list of players who have endured unsuccessful tenures for Los Blancos. Madrid are also keen to offload defender Fabio Coentrao before the summer transfer window shuts down.
Returning to Sociedad his first option despite interest from other clubs
Illaramendi struggled to live up to the expectations at the Bernabeu after he arrived from the Basque side for a fee of €32.2m on a six-year-deal. After the departure of Xabi Alonso he was expected to push on and replace the veteran midfielder but former Real manager Carlo Ancelotti showed no faith in him and preferred playing Sergio Ramos as a defensive midfielder in the Champions league clash against Juventus.
Despite interest from clubs like Tottenham, Liverpool, Arsenal and Southampton, Illaramendi stated that returning back to San Sebastian was his ‘first option’.
The new signing expressed his delight on the move from the Spanish capital. "Very happy. Of course, I wanted to return, I haven't yet spoken to my teammates, later I will speak with them. Real [Sociedad] has always been my first option and I was really wanting to return home, of course." said the Spanish International.
The club issued a brief statement of their own thanking him for his efforts: "Real Madrid CF and Real Sociedad have agreed the transfer of the player Asier Illarramendi.
"The club wants to show its appreciation for the years of dedication and professionalism of Illarramendi, and wishes him good luck in his new career."
Illaramendi is David Moyes’ second major signing of the summer Jonathas arrived from Elche.