English Premiership

Bendtner, De Jong exit EPL

2012-08-31 19:24
Nigel de Jong (Gallo Images)

Rome - Denmark forward Nicklas Bendtner was loaned from Arsenal to champion Juventus and Netherlands midfielder Nigel de Jong left Manchester City for AC Milan in the two biggest moves on the final day of a lackluster Italian transfer window.

Also, Luca Toni rejoined Fiorentina in a surprise move just before the deadline.

Juventus will reportedly pay Bendtner €1.5 million ($1.88 million) this season, and will have the option to pay Arsenal €6 million ($7.54 million) after this season to keep him.

"So happy and humble. A dream come true," Bendtner tweeted. "I can finally say I am a Juventus player. Very proud and can't wait to wear the stripes! I hope we will have great times together."

Milan announced a three-year deal for De Jong and included him in its squad for Saturday's match at Bologna. The Rossoneri will reportedly pay City a €3.5 million ($4.4 million) transfer fee.

With few major signings, the transfer focus has been on the departures of key players like Milan's Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva, and Napoli's Ezequiel Lavezzi — who have all joined Paris Saint-Germain.

Bendtner scored eight goals while on loan with Sunderland last season. De Jong helped City to the Premier League title and was in the Netherlands team that finished runner-up to Spain at the 2010 World Cup.

Juve has kept most of its squad intact after winning Serie A for the first time since being stripped of its 2006 title following a match-fixing scandal. However, Milan has offloaded an entire squad's worth of players and has made several acquisitions this week.

On Wednesday, Milan signed 22-year-old Spanish forward Bojan Krkic from Roma, a day after bringing in 17-year-old French forward M'Baye Niang from Caen.

Inter Milan also appears relatively satisfied with its squad, having already added goalkeeper Samir Handanovic from Udinese to replace the departed Julio Cesar, midfielder Walter Gargano on loan from Napoli and forwards Antonio Cassano (from Milan) and Rodrigo Palacio (Genoa). But club President Massimo Moratti is still looking for a backup to forward Diego Milito, with Lazio's Sergio Floccari among the last-minute possibilities.

On Friday, Inter introduced Uruguayan midfielder and fullback Alvaro Pereira, who was signed from Porto to replace the departed Maicon.

"Maicon was a great and important player and he did a lot for Inter, but I'm Alvaro Pereira and I'm another person," Pereira said.

Fiorentina has remodeled its entire squad with 16 new players for coach Vincenzo Montella, with Toni the final addition.

The 35-year-old Toni scored 47 Serie A goals for Fiorentina in 2005-06 and 2006-07 before leaving for Bayern Munich. He had been out of contract.

Fiorentina also added Serbia defender Nenad Tomovic in a €2.5 million ($3.14 million) deal from Lecce and midfielder Giuliano Migliaccio in a free loan from Palermo.

Earlier this week, Fiorentina sharply criticized Juventus for interfering in its negotiations with Manchester United forward Dimitar Berbatov, who decided to remain in the English Premier League by joining Fulham.

In other moves, forward Marco Borriello left Roma for Genoa, freeing Alberto Gilardino to join Bologna

Meanwhile, Napoli appeared set to announce a renewal for prized forward Edinson Cavani.

Aiming for a top-three finish to get back into the Champions League, Napoli also signed midfielder Giandomenico Mesto from Genoa and 21-year-old Brazilian defender Bruno Uvini from Sao Paulo.

Elsewhere, Sydney FC announced Friday that former Juventus forward Alessandro Del Piero had agreed to contract terms with the A-League club, but the player's brother and agent said the deal was not finalized.

Also, Romanian forward Adrian Mutu joined Corsican side Ajaccio in a three-year deal earlier this week from Cesena.

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