Vicente Montes recalled the controversial transfer of Luís Figo to Real Madrid in 2000
Luís Figo left the world of football in shock 22 years ago, when he left Barcelona and emerged as a reinforcement for arch-rivals Real Madrid, having even been a key factor in helping Florentino Pérez to winning the elections for the club presidency.
Speaking to A Marca newspaper, Vicente Montes, a lawyer who played an active role in negotiations with the Portugal international, recalled the wording of the pre-agreement which tied Figo to the meringues, admitting he had already seen proposing large sums by the document.
Florentino Pérez, then a candidate for the presidency of Real Madrid, promised to pay the club 30 million euros if he failed to bring Figo to the Spanish capital, and an identical amount was agreed for the sanction that the player would have to pay in case of termination of the transaction.
After it was announced that Figo would be leaving Barca for Real Madrid, the former winger was the target of several threats, having even reconsidered the switch but would end up joining Los Blancos, in exchange for 60 million euros.
“The process started about three months before the elections. Paulo Futre and José Veiga, who was Figo’s manager, called me. Paulo had already asked me before, without telling me who the player was, if he could to hire a footballer in a concrete way. It was only a few hours before the meeting that I learned that it was Real Madrid and Figo”, began by recalling Vicente Montes.
“I dealt with everything with José Luis del Valle, one of the most important people at a legal level that I have met, in addition to being a lawyer, he was Florentino’s right arm. When the day came to put everything on paper, we sat until the wee hours of dawn and prepared the document. We couldn’t do much consultation because there was no precedent and the case required maximum confidentiality”, he detailed, adding that the pre-agreement with Figo “had about four pages”.
“I have been offered money several times. Lately the subject has been discussed again, but for me it is the same because I will never sell it, my loyalty and my word are worth more”, guarantees Montes, who revealed that he had already received proposals of “a few” million for the document, which he keeps “in Cáceres”.
The lawyer also explained that after Florentino Pérez was elected to Real Madrid, the club was forced to draw up a new contract with Figo: “Obviously, because at that time [da assinatura do pré-acordo] he [Florentino Pérez] was just a candidate.”