Sebastian Giovinco implies Max Allegri pushed him out of Juventus, but he already “feels at home” with Toronto FC.
The Atomic Ant held his presentation Press conference in Toronto on Friday and then spoke to La Gazzetta dello Sport.
“Within 48 hours of the idea being proposed to me, Toronto manager Tim Bezbatchenko flew to Turin to meet me,” he revealed.
“They were stung by Jermain Defoe’s departure and wanted to make sure I was available. We liked each other straight away.
“Toronto won me over by giving me the Number 10 jersey: the one I never got to wear at Juventus. They also gifted me an iPad with all the club mission statements on it. They made a good impression.
“We had lunch for an hour and never discussed money. I made my decision before knowing the figures. I decided straight away and began planning the future with my family. My father Gianni wasn’t sure, but then he was the first to fly out to Canada. I can’t wait for my wife to come out here with our son Jacopo, who will turn 2 in May. We have to find a house.”
Yet Giovinco reveals he had been ready to sign on for many more years at Juventus, but Max Allegri put the brakes on.
“The renewal was close, then there was silence with me while the club told my agent that the Coach had other ideas. Allegri never said anything to me. Ever. He is a good Coach, the results are with him, but everyone has their own methods.”
Despite the lack of playing time in Turin and this move to Major League Soccer, Giovinco is still getting called up by Italy Coach Antonio Conte.
“I rang Conte and was pleased that he shared my enthusiasm for this move. Let it be clear, I didn’t ask him anything about the Nazionale and he made no promises to me. Who knows, one day he might come to Canada...”
The ex-Parma star was never quite welcomed by Juve fans and Conte famously shouted at the crowd who jeered him during a substitution.
“Only those who are jealous could think I failed in Italy. I won two and a half Scudetti along with two Super Cups. I could’ve done more, but there was a strange atmosphere around me. After a while I was accused of only scoring non-decisive goals.
“That day Conte embarrassed me by asking me to slow down as I left the field and come close to him. Then he got angry with the media too in order to defend me. That’s what he’s like. It’s no coincidence he got where he is today.
“Could I have done better? At a certain stage I favoured assists to goals, helping others rather than going for glory myself. It wasn’t smart. Then I lacked confidence, despite Conte’s hard work. They wouldn’t even let me take free kicks and at that point I lost my way.
“The first rule at Juve is that you have to look out for yourself. Alessandro Del Piero was a good teammate, but the comparisons weighed on me. We have different characteristics and I never compared myself to him, but certain labels are hard to shift.”
Giovinco also revealed he gave Vincenzo Montella the all-clear for a move to Fiorentina, but “the club never made an offer.
“I thank Juve for all these years, but now it is important for me to think about the future.”
Now he can focus on learning English and already feels at home in Toronto. “There are many Italians here, above all Sicilians and Calabrians, like my father and mother. I was born in Turin, but at proud of those roots.
“What will I miss about Italy? Certainly not the endless slow motion replays or controversy over referees. Here I will be able to play against Gerrard or Lampard, while I even read that Di Natale could come to New York.”
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