Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 26 August 2019

Higuain undergoes medical at AC Milan even as Bonucci set for Juve return

Italy defender Bonucci arrives in Turin for medical, while Argentina striker Higuain set to move in opposite direction

AC Milan will be Gonzalo Higuain's third Italian club, with the Argentine having played for Napoli and Juventus. Reuters
AC Milan will be Gonzalo Higuain's third Italian club, with the Argentine having played for Napoli and Juventus. Reuters

Italy, it seems, is where all the big-money football transfers are happening at the moment.

Less than a month after Cristiano Ronaldo left Primera Liga giants Real Madrid following a hugely successful nine-year stint to join serial Seria A winners Juventus, 'the Old Lady' of Italian football acquired defender Leonardo Bonucci in exchange for Gonzalo Higuain in a swap deal with league rivals AC Milan.

Italy defender Bonucci arrived in Turin on Thursday for a medical ahead of a return to Juventus from Milan, while Argentina striker Higuain is set to move in the opposite direction, the Serie A clubs confirmed.

Milan said that Higuain, who has spent two seasons at Juventus, had also arrived for his medical.

"Look who's in Milan ready for medicals," the club said on Twitter in a post accompanied by a photograph of Higuain in a Milan training shirt.

Several dozen supporters waited outside the clinic where Higuain was pictured arriving at 9.30am local time (11.30 UAE).

Juventus said on their website that Bonucci, who spent seven seasons at the club before joining Milan a year ago in a €40 million (Dh170.6m) move, had arrived in Turin for his medical.

Higuain, 30, moved to Juventus in 2016 for €90m after scoring a record 36 Serie A goals in the previous season for Napoli and his sudden departure infuriated that team's supporters.

He has won Serie A and Coppa Italia titles in each of his two seasons with Juventus and scored 55 goals in 105 appearances in all competitions, including 40 goals in 73 outings in Serie A.


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Critics, however, say he has failed to make an impact on the big occasion.

He had a subdued World Cup where he started one game, appeared as a substitute in two more and failed to score a goal. He was left on the bench for the second round match against France as Argentina lost 4-3 and were knocked out.

Bonucci's return to Juve would reunite him with Andrea Barzagli and Giorgio Chiellini, who together formed the so-called 'BBC' defence, which proved to be one of Europe's most formidable rearguards.

Barzagli, 37, extended his contract for another season in June.

Juventus have won the last seven Serie A titles and their main ambition is now to win the Uefa Champions League, after finishing runners-up in 2015 and 2017.

Seven-time European champions Milan have had a series of disappointing seasons since they won their last Serie A title in 2011.

Juventus defender Mattia Caldara, who spent last season on loan at Atalanta, is also expected to move to Milan as part of the deal.

Updated: August 2, 2018 04:56 PM



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