A photo of Christoph MetzelderImage via Wikipedia

BERLIN, May 27, 2007 (AFP) – German international defender Christoph Metzelder will leave Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund to join Spanish giants Real Madrid next season, Dortmund coach Thomas Doll revealed on Sunday.

The 26-year-old centre-back has made 30 appearances for his country and was named by national coach Joachim Loew in the squad for next month’s Euro 2008 qualifiers against San Marino and Slovakia.

Having admitted in interviews he has been learning Spanish for months, Metzelder’s switch to Madrid has been one of the worst kept secrets in football, but Doll finally confirmed it on Sunday.

“Christoph Metzelder will go to Real Madrid next season and we are looking for another defender to replace him,” Doll told German television channel DSF.

The move has yet to be confirmed by the Spanish side, but an announcement is expected by Real after La Liga finishes on Sunday.