As Serie A returns, we take a look at the biggest and most interesting deals in the Italian top flight.
It has been a fascinating summer in Italy, as the big clubs all made big signings with the hope of finally knocking Juventus off their perch.
Here we review the deals done in Serie A…
Cristiano Ronaldo – Real Madrid to Juventus
As long as you’ve spent 15 minutes on earth over the past month, you will have noticed Cristiano Ronaldo has left Real Madrid to try and take Juventus to the next level. It took £105m to acquire the forward from Spain, a considerable fee for a 33-year-old, even if it is Ronaldo. Juventus will be hoping he is just the man to help them win the Champions League, a feat they haven’t achieved since 1996. They have won Serie A on seven consecutive occasions but that is no longer enough.
Gonzalo Higuain – Juventus to Milan
Due to the arrival of Ronaldo, there were always going to be casualties at Juventus. Striker Gonzalo Higuain scored 16 goals in the league last season but this time around his minutes on the pitch would be limited had he stayed in Turin. Luckily, Milan came calling, giving the Argentinian the opportunity to lead their attack – initially on loan – as they look to challenge at the top again.
Gonzalo Higuain left Juventus for Milan over the summer
Leonardo Bonucci – Milan to Juventus
Heading in the other direction to Higuain is Leonardo Bonucci. After one season with Milan, the defender has returned to Turin. He wanted the move and when Higuain was offered up as part of the deal, both parties were happy to get it done. Ronaldo might be the standout purchase, but getting the old band back together in the defence will only help.
Sime Vrsaljko – Atletico Madrid to Inter
A surprise to many that Inter were able to prise the defender away from the Spanish capital, especially after such an impressive World Cup as part of the Croatia squad which made it to the final in Russia. The full-back never stops and has great ability when it comes to crossing from the right, so will be a highly valuable asset at the San Siro.
Stefan De Vrij – Lazio to Inter
When someone of the Dutchman’s experience becomes available for nothing, then there is always going to be interest from around the world, and Inter were the ones who did just enough to convince him to join them. The centre-back was a steady influence at Lazio and Inter will be hoping he can do the same for them following some barren years.
Justin Kluivert, left, is now a Roma player
Simone Verdi – Bologna to Napoli
The forward came of age at Bologna, earning him the big move he has craved to show his talents further up the ladder. Napoli finished second last season and face a challenge to stay there considering the investment made by the other challengers but with Simone Verdi they have a versatile player who could have an impact anywhere across the front.
Justin Kluivert – Ajax to Roma
It is pretty easy to remember the name as his father, Patrick, was a legendary striker at Ajax and Barcelona, but Justin is now becoming a player in his own right. Still only 19, the Dutchman has flown the nest to learn the tricks of the Italian trade after two impressive seasons in the Eredivisie.
Mattia Perin – Genoa to Juventus
You need pretty big hands to fill Gianluigi Buffon’s gloves and Mattia Perin is up for the challenge of replacing him after his long and successful career at Juventus. The former Genoa stopper will battle it out with Wojciech Szczesny for the starting spot, which could be an intriguing sub-plot as the lights shine on Ronaldo.
Radja Nainggolan swapped Roma for Inter
Radja Nainggolan – Roma to Inter
Never short of a word or a tackle, controversial midfielder Radja Nainggolan could be an inspired signing. “He is the turbine we were missing from our engine,” Inter boss Luciano Spalletti told Sky in Italy upon the Belgian’s arrival. It is no surprise Spalletti worked so hard to get him, knowing what he could provide from their time together at Roma.
Darijo Srna – Shakhtar Dontesk to Cagliari
A legend in Donetsk, Darijo Srna has finally moved on after 15 years in Ukraine. At 36 his best days are undoubtedly behind him but his experience and how he influences Cagliari will be a fascinating watch.
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