Florentino Perez believes Lorenzo Sanz deserves "the greatest recognition" from Real Madrid, promising a tribute will be made to the former president at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Sanz, who was club president at Madrid between 1995 and 2000, died at the age of 76 after contracting the coronavirus.

In a statement on the club's website, current president Perez highlighted the success Madrid enjoyed under Sanz, who presided over two Champions League triumphs, including the 1998 title that ended a 32-year wait for glory in Europe's top club competition.

"Today, we remember Lorenzo Sanz, who has fallen victim to this tragedy," Perez said.

"He was the president who gave us Madridistas the long-awaited European Cup after a 32-year absence. We Madridistas will forever remember him as the president who brought hope and joy flooding back on the 20th of May 1998 in Amsterdam.

"La Septima was ours. It was then followed by La Octava two years on, in the year 2000 in Paris, as Real Madrid returned to its rightful position in football's history books.

"Beyond those two European Cups, under his tutelage, the club also clinched one Intercontinental Cup, one LaLiga title, a Spanish Super Cup, a basketball league title and Cup Winners' Cup."

Perez said Sanz still attended Madrid matches regularly and was present to witness the club's four Champions League triumphs between 2015 and 2018.

He had been admitted to hospital with coronavirus-like symptoms and his son, Lorenzo, announced his death on social media on Saturday.

Perez added: "We've lost a fine Madridista who dedicated a large part of his life to what was both his and his family's greatest pleasure: Real Madrid.

"Here at the club, we'll do all we can to honour his memory and legacy, to pay him the tribute that all of Madridismo craves. Lorenzo deserves the greatest recognition.

"A tribute to him in our Santiago Bernabeu Stadium, where he continued to attend every game in order to stay close to his team. For now, as we all know, this is not possible, but we will of course ensure it takes place in order to enshrine his memory in the minds of new generations of Madridismo."

Real Madrid and Bayern Munich face a struggle to compete with Premier League giants because of the financial muscle of top English clubs, admits Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.

The Bayern chief executive says domestic television deals have created a major distortion in wealth between many teams in mainland Europe and those in England.

Speaking at the SPOBIS 2020 business event, Rummenigge also said there was "no need for change" when it comes to the Champions League after recent talk of expansion.

He spoke from experience when he pointed to how Premier League clubs have been able to attract the best players, the best coaches and create the most profitable academies.

And Rummenigge also stated how even 13-time European champions Real Madrid, whose president Florentino Perez he knows well, find it worrying to look at the money flooding into English teams.

"I think Florentino Perez's problem is the Premier League," Rummenigge said. "With Real Madrid he belongs to the world's most prominent club, because it's the most successful one and you have to admit it is also incredibly strong in terms of star power.

"However, his problem is the Premier League because it receives three times more money from domestic TV stations than all of us. No matter if it's Spain, Germany, France etc.

"That's why they have an undeniable advantage in the transfer market."

Rummenigge is full of admiration for how English teams have spent their money, by strengthening not only their squads but infrastructure too.

"The English clubs did well, one has to admit. In step one, they bought good players; in step two, they went out for good coaches, for instance Jurgen Klopp who has tremendous success at Liverpool; and in step three they gathered quality in management.

"They used their bigger income in comparison to other leagues to develop their quality. Their youth work has become a benchmark.

"And no matter in which country, or which city we play in, we all try to keep up with the English clubs, which is not easy."

Bayern sit second in the Bundesliga after 19 games of this season, a point behind leaders RB Leipzig, and are chasing an eighth consecutive title.

They last won the Champions League in the 2012-13 season, with Real Madrid triumphing four times since then, Barcelona winning in 2015 and Liverpool scooping last term's trophy.


The format of the Champions League is ripe for debate, with reports indicating the European Club Association is urging UEFA to include more rounds of fixtures in a push for expansion.

Rummenigge, though, as a major power broker with one of Europe's most powerful clubs, stressed there is no good reason for an overhaul.

"There is no need for change," he said.

"So far no one has come to me and said, 'We need to make drastic changes'. This radicalism that is being discussed at the moment is going too far.

"We need to respect the clubs and see if they are satisfied or if they are in need of change. How do the fans see it, how do the viewers on TV or even the TV stations?

"That's why I don't see a necessity. My press officer Stefan Mennerich has a nice saying - 'Don't fix, what ain't broken'. And the Champions League is everything but broken."

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez described head coach Zinedine Zidane as a "blessing from heaven" after his latest final triumph.

Zidane has won each of his finals as Madrid coach, taking his tally of successes to nine with a tense victory against Atletico Madrid in the Supercopa de Espana on Sunday.

Madrid won 4-1 on penalties after a goalless draw, scraping to a shoot-out after Federico Valverde was sent off for a cynical foul on a goalbound Alvaro Morata late in extra time.

This was the first title of Zidane's second stint as Madrid boss - the first returning three straight Champions League wins - but Perez is confident the Frenchman is ready to deliver further success.

"[Zidane] has plenty of trophies and we're very happy for him," Perez said, as reported by Marca. "I hope that he wins more trophies.

"Zidane has a loving relationship with Real Madrid. He decided to rest for a year and now he's returned with renewed energy. Zidane is a blessing from heaven."

Perez felt the triumph at the King Abdullah Sports City Stadium in Jeddah was particularly impressive given the absence of a number of key men, including Eden Hazard, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale.

"We came here without some great players like Hazard, Benzema and Bale," he said. "Zidane has been able to put together a team and we won the trophy.

"I think that we're on the path to finding ourselves again after a little dip. New people have come in who have given the team intensity and we're on a good path."

But Perez reserved some praise for goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who saved from Thomas Partey in the shoot-out.

"We brought [Courtois] here because we believe that he's the best goalkeeper in the world, and he has been," Perez said. "He was one of the key players in the victory."

Real Madrid must rediscover their "hunger for success" after a disappointing 2018-19 season, according to club president Florentino Perez.

Madrid could only manage a third-place finish in LaLiga last season, as three coaches failed to provide a huge amount of inspiration.

Julen Lopetegui lasted until October, before his successor Santiago Solari was dismissed in March to allow for Zinedine Zidane's return, though they were no better under the Frenchman and finished a whopping 19 points adrift of champions Barcelona.

Madrid were also dumped out of the Champions League by Ajax in the quarter-finals having won the title for three consecutive seasons, and Perez is demanding that winning habit returns.

Speaking at Madrid's ordinary general assembly, Perez said: "This is a united club and that's our strength, the strength of 'madridismo' [Real Madrid fandom].

"We have to understand that this team had won everything there was to win in a unique and historic cycle which saw us lift 17 titles in the past nine seasons. An almost inimitable cycle.

"It's been a difficult season and we've all taken stock where necessary, because we need to turn the situation around. Don't be in any doubt that we will do just that.

"By placing great demands on ourselves, we must carry out the transformation required which will allow 'madridistas' [Madrid fans] to dream of new successes and titles.

"Our challenge is to keep winning on an international football stage which is increasingly complicated and competitive. And of course, we need to recover that hunger for success. The desire that has been a crucial factor in enjoying one of the best eras in our history."

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez dreams of seeing the club's basketball team playing in the NBA.

Madrid are one of the dominant forces in European basketball, winning a record 10 EuroLeague titles. Their most recent success was in the 2017-2018 season, while they were losing semi-finalists earlier this year.

They have also won the Spanish league four years out of the last five, with Perez suggesting Madrid's players deserve to test themselves against the best by joining the Eastern Conference.

"In basketball we play many insignificant games," Perez said. "It's better to play less, but better.

"We have explored the option of a European League and I have the dream of seeing Madrid in the NBA.

"I have asked us to be included in the Eastern Conference, but they say that's far away."

Perez suggested an alternative option could be to include Real Madrid in a new European Conference that would be part of the NBA.

"The other teams in Spain don't have as much interest," Perez added.

"But there are Greek and Turkish clubs with which we could have a European Conference.

"There are only two teams in the NBA with more followers than us on social networks."

Real Madrid president Florentino Perez admitted the LaLiga giants have chased Robert Lewandowski and Paul Pogba.

Bayern Munich striker Lewandowski has been linked to Madrid previously, while they have also targeted Manchester United star Pogba.

Speaking on Wednesday, Perez said Madrid had chased Lewandowski and were experiencing similar in their pursuit of Pogba.

"There are players who do not sell," he said, via Spanish media.

"For Lewandowski, we have gone for several years for him and nothing because he has no clause and they don't sell him.

"There is no way and that has happened to us with Pogba. When certain players are sold, we can go for them."

Another player Madrid have been linked to is 20-year-old Paris Saint-Germain superstar Kylian Mbappe.

Perez was coy when asked about the France international, who is widely regarded as the best young talent in the world.

"Of course we like a Frenchman that they say out there and we'll go for him," he said. "But they don't sell him."

Eder Militao vowed to give his all to make history with Real Madrid following his arrival from Porto.

Madrid confirmed in March an agreement was in place to sign Militao after reportedly triggering his €50million release clause.

And following the conclusion of his Copa America commitments with tournament hosts and champions Brazil, the 21-year-old was presented to the media on Wednesday.

Militao, who made one substitute appearance in Brazil, said joining Los Blancos has always been his dream.

"I'm very happy to play for the best club in the world," the youngster said at a news conference that was cut short after he complained of feeling dizzy.

"Since I was a kid I wanted to play for the biggest club in the world and I want to thank the president and all the Madrid fans for their confidence.

"They can rest assured that I will give everything for this jersey. I hope to have a great season here and make history with this club."

Capable of playing at centre-back or right-back, Militao is expected to immediately challenge for a regular spot in Madrid's back four.

"I am a versatile player, who always plays for the love of what he does," he said. "I do not like to lose and I always expect the most from myself. I am very competitive and very competent.

"I think it's going to be a very good fight [for a starting place]. I've come to do my job - it will not be easy, but I'm going to listen to what the coach says."

Militao was the first signing of head coach Zinedine Zidane's second spell and he has since been joined in making the switch to the Spanish capital by Eden Hazard, Luka Jovic and Ferland Mendy.

Madrid president Florentino Perez welcomed the youngster's arrival and described him as one of the best defenders around after seeing off competition from rival clubs.

"Winning is part of this club's DNA and nobody surrenders here," he told reporters. "Today is an important day for us as we welcome one of the great defenders in world football.

"He arrives at just 21, he's adapted quickly to European football and for five months he was part of the best defensive set-up in Portuguese football with Porto.

"His courage and attitude will help him to succeed, as will the millions of fans we have around the world.

"Now you [Militao] will face the biggest challenge of your entire professional career. You arrive at Real Madrid because you have chosen this club ahead of all the big clubs that wanted to have you in their ranks. 

"Here you will demonstrate everything you have shown. Your courage and your love for this badge will help you succeed. And our supporters from all over the world will also help you."

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