Sydney FC have landed the star signing of Alessandro Del Piero, with the Juventus legend penning a two-year to join the A-League club
|By PADDY HIGGS
Sydney FC have pulled off the biggest signing in A-League history, with Alessandro Del Piero joining the Sky Blues as their marquee man.
With speculation rife Del Piero's move to Australia would be confirmed at a press conference in Turin at 13.30CET, Goal.com sources in Italy indicate the 37-year-old has signed a two-year deal worth around €2 million per season.
The reports proved correct, with Del Piero presented to the waiting press as a Sydney FC player shortly before 14.00CET and stating "for the next two years, I am Australian".
"I'm happy to have signed with Sydney and for the next two years I will play with them," Del Piero told reporters at Wednesday's press conference.
"A lot of clubs contacted me, Italian teams too and I thank all of them. Today my new adventure starts and my emotions are mixed.
"I thank Sydney for this opportunity and his fans that already adopted me. I will discover a fantastic city and a fantastic country. I am grateful to my family for being with me in every moment.
"I will continue to cheer Juventus. In Australia I will be able to deepen my passion for rugby. Above all I'm here to score a lot of goals and to try to improve Australian football with my experiences. I hope Australian people love football."
The World Cup winner had been reportedly coveted by the likes of Celtic, Tottenham and FC Sion, while Liverpool were also credited with an interest after missing out on landing a striker on transfer deadline day.
But it appears the delegation to Turin of Sydney FC chief executive officer Tony Pignata and Australia-based player agent Lou Sticca was enough to convince the forward his future lies in the A-League.
"This signing is a major coup for Sydney FC and marks a historic day for football in this country," Sydney FC chairman David Barlow said via club statement. "This is for all Australian football fans.
"Alessandro Del Piero is a global icon of the game and we are honoured he has chosen Sydney FC, ahead of many other options, as the club where he will begin the next chapter of his illustrious football career."