Five eye-catching switches to Serie A in the winter window
With the winter transfer window in full flow, many of the top-flight Italian sides have made rapid movement in securing big names for the remainder of this current season.
Coral writers analyse five of the best Serie A switches that have been confirmed as part of this year’s top European football transfer deals.
Current league leaders Juventus recently announced that they had ended their co-ownership agreement for the 23-year-old striker. Rafael Benitez’s Napoli, 50/1 to win Serie A, now have complete ownership of Italy international Gabbiadini, with a reported fee of €13m being split between Sampdoria and Juventus, with each having previously had 50 per cent ownership of his services.
The Old Lady will be paid their €6.25m share over four years despite Gabbiadini never actually making an appearance for Massimiliano Allegri’s side. Netting nine times in 15 outings for Sampdoria this season, he earned his first senior Azzurri cap for Italy in 2012, playing in the second half of a friendly against England in Bern. Gabbiadini will now face competition from the likes of Gonzalo Higuain and Duvan Zapata for a starting place in the Napoli line-up.
Roberto Mancini snapped up the Swiss playmaker from Bayern Munich, with the 23-year-old claiming he turned down a move to the Premier League. Swiss star Shaqiri signed a deal keeping him at the San Siro until 2019, with Inter Milan hoping his arrival can boost their chances of earning a Champions League place this season.
Kosovo-born Shaqiri joined Bayern from Basel in 2012, and went on to win two Bundesliga titles and the 2013 Champions League with the German outfit, but he struggled to establish himself regularly in the first team. The ferocious forward made his debut in a goalless draw with Empoli, but the result manages to move his new team within five points of fourth spot.
Torino enhanced their striking options by landing Argentine forward Lopez from Chievo Verona. The Bull become the fifth Italian club of the 30-year-old’s career, after only netting once in nine outings for Chievo since his summer switch from Catania.
Lopez was part of the Champions League winning Barcelona squad in 2005/06, also picking up two La Liga titles. Following his 2010 move to Catania, the frontman also had loans spells at AC Milan and Sampdoria. The target man made an instant impact at his new club, firing home to steal all three points for Torino in their last outing against Cesena.
According to both Cerci and Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi, the winger’s move to the San Siro has been on the cards for many years, after both parties finally completed a deal for the Italian international.
The 27-year-old signed an 18-month loan deal from Atletico Madrid, with Fernando Torres heading in the opposite direction. Milan manager Filippo Inzaghi claimed that his forward line is now complete after Cerci’s capture, with his attacking attributes set to provide the Rossoneri with some much-needed pace and flexibility.
After reaching double figures in both goals and assists for Torino last season, where he was on loan, Cerci made a fiery debut for Milan. The forward was allegedly involved in a half-time bust-up with teammate Ignazio Abate after the defender criticised the winger for his lack of creativity in the first period of their 1-0 defeat to Atalanta last time out.
Cagliari completed the capturing of Croatian striker Cop after agreeing a move from Dinamo Zagreb. The highly-rated Croatia international has scored 15 goals in all competitions this campaign, following up a prolific run last term, when he bagged 33 strikes.
The Italian outfit snapped up the 24-year-old after catching the eye of their coach and Premier League legend Gianfranco Zola. Cop has two caps for his country, with the most recent coming in a 2-1 defeat to Argentina last November, but he is sure to feature heavily in the near future.