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Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 January 2005, 14:45 GMT
Morientes eager for Anfield debut
Fernando Morientes
Fernando Morientes found it hard to contain his delight at the prospect of joining Liverpool as he gave a final media conference in Madrid.

He said: "I'm going to Liverpool with all the enthusiasm in the world.

"This has been one of the most important decisions in my life and I'm very happy about it. I'm going there to work hard and become one of the team.

"I can't wait to play my first game and if it was against Manchester United then it couldn't be any better."

Morientes added: "It would be a great debut for me and even better if the team wins."

Since the arrival of Ronaldo at Real in 2003 Morientes' opportunities have been limited at the Bernabeu and he admitted he was leaving Madrid with mixed feelings.

"I've spent eight years at this club, including one on loan at Monaco, and they have given me everything in my career so I've only got words of thanks for them.

"I'm going with a cupboard full of trophies and for me that's the most important thing

We tried to convince him to stay
Real director of football Arrigo Sacchi

"It hasn't been a very pleasant few months at Real, but a lot of things have happened at the club that have contributed to that and now I'm very happy."

Liverpool were not the only club to show an interest in the striker - Lyon came in with a late bid of 6m but Morientes said Anfield was his preferred destination.

"I am grateful the club have accepted my wishes to go to Liverpool rather than other better offers they could have had.

"All I can say is thanks to all the clubs who were interested. One of them was Lyon, but when their offer came in I had given my word to Liverpool.

"The Lyon offer came later and I had made my decision. I wanted to go to England."

Meanwhile Real's director of football Arrigo Sacchi revealed the club would have preferred to have kept Morientes.

Sacchi said: "We tried to convince him to stay but we couldn't - we have a very high opinion of him as a player and as a person."

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