Cristiano Ronaldo's lucrative move from Real Madrid to Juventus could pave the way for Lionel Messi to swap La Liga for Serie A, says former Bianconeri defender Ciro Ferrara.
Italian champions Juve announced a stunning swoop for Los Blancos' record goalscorer on Tuesday in a €100 million deal following weeks of speculation.
It represents a huge coup for Serie A and Ferrara, who won five league titles and a Champions League medal with Juve before later coaching the team, can see Barcelona great Messi being tempted by a move to Italy.
"Cristiano Ronaldo has chosen Juventus and that is something special for Italian football," he told Corriere di Torino .
"Now we wait for Messi and this would not be a joke.
"Ronaldo is an exceptional signing in every sense. It's true that he's no longer young, but he takes care of all details and is training all the time.
"It is clear that Juventus' main goal is to win the Champions League. With this coup Juventus has entered into the top five powers of world football because they have bought the best player."
Ferrara believes that the exit of Madrid head coach Zinedine Zidane, coupled with Juve keeping hold of boss Massimiliano Allegri, may have been a hint as to what was to come.
"Nobody expected it but I think the deal has been in the works for a while," he added.
"I think of Zidane leaving Real and Allegri who decides to stay at Juventus. I think they both knew what was going to happen."