The Brazilian striker Leandro Damiao has been signed on a short-term contract by Real Betis. The deal is to expire at the end of the current campaign. This is the first raid of Damiao into Europe after being classified as a prominent player in Brazil.
This is the third recent signing of Real Betis, after bringing in the attacker Charly Musonda Jr. and the 24-year-old defender Martin Montoya. Both on them arrived in the Spanish No.14 over the January transfer window from Chelsea and Barcelona respectively. The three newly-signed players could make their debut in Real Betis game against Valencia, who have been struggling for form lately, too.
Up to date, Real Betis occupies the 14th position in La Liga table and stays two points above the bottom three teams.
The 26-year-old player would be given the opportunity to bring a new life to his career in Spain after he has been facing some problems related to his physical form over the last several seasons. At that time he has been playing for Brazilian teams Internacional, Cruzeiro and Santos.
Damiao left the ranks of Santos after he claimed that the Brazilian club owed him several unpaid salaries. The fight was then taken to court by the striker, but at the end he reached an agreement with the team to be released.
Real Betis, on their turn, confirmed the news of the transfer in an official statement published on their website, saying that the club has signed the player until the end of the current season. According to the agreement, Damiao is to stay at Estadio Benito Villamarin until June 30, 2016. The 26-year-old striker played a total of 267 matches at top level while being part of Internacional, Santos FC and Cruzeiro EC and has managed to find the back of the net 118 times.
In addition, the Brazil international has been entered 17 times for his country’s senior team, and scored three goals. He has also won several titles with his teams, including a silver medal at the 2010 Olympic Games in London, one Recopa Sudamericana and one Copa Libertadores. Damiao’s career highlight was his top scoring performance at the London Olympic Games in 2010.
Before being signed by Real Betis, Damiao has been linked with Premier League’s Liverpool. The English club failed to add a striker to their side after their £24-million transfer bid for Shakhtar Donetsk’s Alex Teixeira got rejected.