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Friday July 15 2016
Ignore price-tag for Higuain-Juventus

The price-tag for Napoli's Gonzalo Higuain is big, writes Vincent Van Genechten, but for Juventus this is about so much more.

Oh what a shock it was… There were rumours about ongoing negotiations between Gonzalo Higuain and Juventus, with the Bianconeri expected to make a formal offer to Napoli. But with only Tuttosport breaking the news, it was a game of wait-and-see before jumping to conclusions.

Later on, Sky Italia’s Gianluca Di Marzio confirmed that Juve had struck a personal deal with the 28-year-old striker, offering him a four-year deal that will net Higuain €7.5m per year, making him the best-paid player among the Italian champions. The Argentine goal-getter thereby confirmed his intention to leave Napoli after scoring a record 36 goals in Serie A last season.

But now the most difficult part of Juve’s assault begins: trying to convince the Partenopei, one of the club’s biggest rivals, to sell their star player. There’s some debate on Higuain’s €94m release clause. Is it still valid or not? La Gazzetta and CalcioNapoli24 say it expired on June 30, while Di Marzio and Calciomercato claim it hasn’t and can be paid in two instalments of €47m.

Yes or no, it doesn’t really matter. Higuain has shocked the peninsula by agreeing to join Juventus from Napoli, the team that battled them the longest last season. After securing the services of Miralem Pjanic from AS Roma, the Old Lady are establishing themselves as the only true top club in Serie A. The only team that can actually think about completing such transfers.

Even if Higuain doesn’t end up playing in Turin, Juventus still won the war. With Inter and Milan busy trying to find a way to finish in the top three, Napoli and Roma were the Bianconeri’s biggest domestic rivals. Even with the Giallorossi making some quality moves on the transfer market, they still lost their most valuable player to Juve.

Meanwhile, the Partenopei are primed to lose the one player that kept them in the Scudetto race for months. Even if they refuse to sell him to the team that beat them to it, the chances of Higuain returning to Napoli are diminishing every day. Meaning, in a span of just a few weeks, Juventus have hit both Roma and Napoli with a massive strike.

Juventus have shown not only Serie A, but the whole football world, that they are back in business. Due to a combination of smart management, solid investments and success on the pitch, the Bianconeri are once again ready to battle anyone in Europe, football wise and financially. Just look at how they are withstanding huge offers for Leonardo Bonucci and Paul Pogba. This should send a message to all Serie A clubs that a smart financial policy is the basic recipe for success.

And what if Juventus are able to land Higuain despite the odds being against them? Some say it’s crazy to pay such a huge transfer fee for a guy who’s about to turn 29 in December. Others say Juve will have to give up too much talent in addition to the cash in order to get him.

Whether the Old Lady are paying the release clause in two instalments or adding Roberto Pereyra and Simone Zaza to lower the fee, Higuain makes their squad better. Football players are at their physical peak between ages 27 and 32, meaning the Argentine has three quality years ahead of him.

Just look at how Zlatan Ibrahimovic (34) and Cristiano Ronaldo (31) once again dominated last season. On top of that, Higuain hasn’t missed any game due to injury the past two seasons. So, you know what you are getting from him, just like Juventus knew what they were getting when they spent more than €80m on 28-year-old Pavel Nedved and 29-year-old Lilian Thuram in 2001.

At a time when huge fees are paid on potential, the Bianconeri are more than willing to pay for experience. Their window to finally win another Champions League trophy has never been so wide open, so Juve want to take their chances. And who can blame them? If Higuain joins, the Old Lady are primed for a couple of huge seasons. If he doesn’t, they still are. In the end, that’s the biggest story.

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Have your say...
Some stupid posts here.

One thing I will say, that Juventini86 pointed out...maybe this will force the other clubs to make moves...I'm just afraid that the other clubs will be stagnant.

But for the money, I can handle them poaching Higuain. I still hate the Pjanic move tho. Especially when Hernanes is there.

I'm sorry, did everyone forget what Hernanes did at Lazio? He was actually amazing. Allegri showing his shortcomings again.
on the 31st July, 2016 at 3:27pm
JuBentus just bought their next Scudetto by killing competition. I don't think juBe will win UCL.

The only winners in this transfer are Aurelius De Laurentiis and Higuain's agent - his brother.

I am very curious to see what Napoli will do with all this money (possibly 40-50m for their defender).

But Serie A just lost his appeal and TV broadcast prices will eventually drop. WILL watch Premier League for the 1st time in my life.
on the 28th July, 2016 at 10:11am
Well, the deal is finalised. Higuain says he's happy to be here, wish I could be as happy so let's give him time.

That aside, it might be the best kind of business for Serie A in recent history. 3rd most expensive transfer (so far), point for lots of debate, signaling other clubs to step up already; I don't think people cared about Serie A more than they have now.
on the 27th July, 2016 at 10:59am
An absolute rip off. a third of that price tag would be more fitting. 28 as well. Makes pogbas ridiculous valuation seem reasonable. Would rather see 4 or 5 young players bought with the money rather than 90m on a striker no better than ones already at the club.
on the 26th July, 2016 at 7:50pm
We should stop complaining and congratulate Juve on what they've been able to achieve. They have made shrewd buys and genius moves on the market which has enable them to make the signings of Pjanic, Higuain etc... My Milan are a prime example of a club which has ruined themselves. We have wasted money on useless players whereas Juve have invested in pure talent and made smart moves. Without Juve Serie A would be a joke of a league on the same level as Ligue 1.
on the 26th July, 2016 at 12:16pm
Higuain is an unknown commodity for CL. Juve are truly rolling the dice at 90mil for him. He hasn't exactly shown in big competitions. If Juve get it right though, they will have landed a diamond. Higuan reminds me of Ibra in many ways who after many years playing in Seria A turned into a power house. It took a while but he came good. If Juve get it wrong though, Marotta should be shown the door.
on the 26th July, 2016 at 3:33am
@madeinsud and all those who say Serie A is not competitive and will be bad now.

Juve were in Serie B less than a decade ago, and now you say we are the Real and Bayern of Italy (which Juve has always been). But instead of blaming your teams and how they are managed, you blame Juve and politics?!

Juve built this team from scratch, we literally started from the bottom while you all enjoyed our fall with your cheap transfers and easy wins.
Now that the boogyman is back, you're bitching about it.
I'm pretty sure you will be complaining about Serie A if Napoli or whatever team any of you support was the dominant team...

Yeah I want a more competitve league but that doesn't mean we should not sign great players when we can.
If you all can't keep your great player nor buy other ones then the problem is in your club and how it's managed. Don't blame Juve, it's on you.
on the 25th July, 2016 at 10:15pm
@Hamza

Aguero??? Maybe a few years ago, right now Higuain is much better. And I wouldn't want to sign Suarez no matter how good he is, Chiellini and Evra certainly aren't fans. Diego Costa is only going to provide more scummy behaviour over Mandzukic. None of these are better signings than Higuain anyway, monsterous fee or not.

@ MadeInSUD

Kante to Chelsea? City signing Sterling last year? There's so many more examples, Bayern/Real/Barca aren't the only clubs in Europe to make such transfers
on the 25th July, 2016 at 10:14pm
Giacc is a fantastic signing in my opinion. he is a work horse
on the 25th July, 2016 at 6:04pm
I have to be honest, I am very sickened by the turn of serie a. I thought the previous seasons were very competitive. Juve is now the (Real Madrid/Bayern) of serie a. Juve took the star players from their biggest threats: Napoli(Higuain) and Roma (Pjanic). Now allegri looks more of a genius as a coach, which is pathetic.Great coaches like Sarri, spaletti, Simeone, Ranieri don't rely on the market to win things. As a serie a/Napoli fan, I am glad that Napoli is getting more italians
on the 25th July, 2016 at 5:55pm
As a Juventus fan, this Higuaín signing is too costly. There's more disadvantages than there are advantages. In a dream world, the perfect strikers to take Juve to the next level are Aguero or Suarez but none of them will happen. I feel 94 mil is too excessive. Why don't they make a 60 mil bid for Sanchez instead? Why not take a punt on Aubameyang, Benzema, Griezmann or Diego Costa? I personally don't think Higuaín is capable of helping Juventus win a CL - he is not of championship material.
on the 25th July, 2016 at 5:23pm
Marotta has done a terrific job so far netting Dani Alves for free, paying only 32mln for Pjanic. Will do even better if sells Pogba for 120 mln or so. BUT all of this will be undermined if Juve buys Higuain for 90 mln or so. This is a complete madness! He is a top quality player but not for 94 mln. Juve wants CL but Gonzalo is not the one who can win it for Juve (bear in mind all his misses in the finals). And he is 29. I would be deeply upset if that singing happens.
on the 25th July, 2016 at 2:59pm
Mandzukic is a terrific player and Zaza has potential, but please...they're clearly not on the level of Higuain. He's fully world-class, so the suggestion that they could come close to matching is wrong.

Imagine if he loses that belly...
on the 25th July, 2016 at 1:43am
The idea that Higuain has only 2 or 3 seasons left is exaggerated. He's 28. He may burn early, but there's no reason to think he will. People worry more about a player's age today than they ever have, which is odd considering that players are built to last longer now...sounds like a lot of bottom-line corporate thinking.

Higuain was selfish this past season. He played angry and sometimes for himself. But on this team, he doesn't have to do that.
on the 25th July, 2016 at 1:41am
For that price, and given his record in CL, I can only hope he'll prove my doubt wrong.

The signing did what's intended. Juve have moved on from Serie A and want CL, not surprising considering the opposition. Pogba doesn't even need to be sold anymore, neither of the top bidders are that appealing.

Either way, I'm hoping the transfers reflect our performance next season. Not that I want to Pogba to go, but Rugani should be a priority and not on the market.
on the 24th July, 2016 at 4:48pm
@ Ravanelli

Couldn't agree more. Sure Higuain is top class, but at his age, and for that price I also hope it doesn't go through. Basically Juve are punting 50 million (The difference in price between Higuain and Cavani) on Higuain winning them the champions league. If he does indeed fire in the goals to get them there then the 90 million will be worth it, but given his age he realistically has 2, possibly 3 seasons in which to do it.
on the 24th July, 2016 at 1:58pm
So the deal seems to be more possible as everyday passes.
It would be a huge boost to our attack and probably just the edge we need to win the CL. Not to mention getting Pjanic and Pjaca and an extra good defender in Benatia.
But I still think that 90M is more than we should pay. Why can't we get Cavani for half of that..
I don't want this deal to go through because it's a lot of money on someone who will be 30 next season.

But I will have to laugh at all the drama queens who say this move will destroy Serie A.. Yeah like 1 transfer is gonna ruin what 10 years of bad management and corruption didn't already ruin.
Just look at Milan, Inter and Lazio and how they manage their business.
The Italian clubs are the masters of their own demise.
on the 24th July, 2016 at 12:46pm
Ha! And now it happens.

Join me in watching La Liga or the English this yearfriends, there's nothing but the gravestone of a dead league in Italy!
on the 23rd July, 2016 at 9:55pm
Higuain is a great player no doubting that, however i cant no see what he could bring to juventus that someone like ZaZa or Mario Mands cant.Lets not forget what the DYBALA is all about!!!!!! watching Higuain @ Napoli, yes he gets the goals however he doesnt help players like in Lorenzo Insigne and to be honest his greed especially this season has made Insigne look quite average.

Also hes a big game bottler, champions qual for Napoli he was rubbish, world cup final rubbish.
on the 22nd July, 2016 at 1:06pm
@Hypocrisy- man go get yourself checked. why all over the place? Arabs, Platini, Juve..make up your mind. FFP is not complicated to understand at all for average people.It was introduced to stop "spending" clubs from splashin around more than what they make. Real Madrid are apparently in 600M debt. Do you think banks will ever stop financing them?! UEFA is not regulating things to help Juventus LOL Hundreds of football clubs are affected by this. Not there to get delusional paranoid Inter fans..
on the 22nd July, 2016 at 3:08am
With Pogba almost certainly leaving i'd like to see Juve go in for Ruben Neves or Richedly Bazoer. Both are under 20, have broken into their respective first teams (Porto and Ajax) and look like they have big futures. Pick up one of those two for around 30 million and they'd still have 70 million left to buy a top class striker like Benzema or Cavani for around 30-50 million leaving 20-40 million + the money from Zaza and Pereyra sales to add yet more depth to the squad.
on the 21st July, 2016 at 11:35am
@ Rez Can you please not show your stupidity for once? Individuals or buisneses are not regulated by statute as to how much they can spend. Bank are responsible for this. FFP is your corrupt Platini's baby to retain the status quo and help his arab mates and should be called out as such, luckily this is already starting to happen.
on the 21st July, 2016 at 6:14am
With news of Pogba moving to United on full throttle (only to be played out of position... who started "he's a box-to-box midfielder" idea anyway?) I'm still not warming up to signing Higuain. The best he'll do is mentor Dybala, the worst is he'll continue throwing hissy fits and destabilise the squad. And with Mandzukic competing for the same position? It'll be ugly.

If I had to name someone to replace Morata (ideally Berardi) I'd say Icardi. Cavani is a downgrade but cheaper and willing.
on the 20th July, 2016 at 12:33pm
Napoli is playing a stupid game. Does anyone really think that if Higuain really wants the move, that he will play at his best in 16/17, the Napoli president is a fool if he doesn't sell at the BEST MARKET PRICE and Juve should buy him at this price.
Higuaín is not worth Euro94m, considering what other strikers have been valued, but he is worth something, remember that he has limited seasons left.
Unfortunately, it is personal for the Napoli president, that is why he wont sell.
on the 20th July, 2016 at 12:03pm
@Hypocrisy: LOL Can you even try not to be ignorant for once? Juventus did what any other club technically should do: signing best players on small budget or even half as bossman/free agent signings. from Pirlo,Pogba, Llorente and Coman for free to Barzagli for 300k euros! Dani Alvez being the latest. Or Vidal and Tevez for around 10M..the list is long..so when a solid management runs the club, success and financial growth are guaranteed. FFP only limits the idiots...Precisely the Moratti kind..
on the 19th July, 2016 at 7:45pm
Higuain is not as good as Suarez, but yes he is a better player than Lewandowski. But the amount quoted is a ton. I think Cavani is an overall better player, if he's back to his best, tho Higuain the greater goal-scorer. But if Cavani is back to his best, they complete the top 5 (Lewandowski out).

For less than half the price, I can't understand how Juve would go for Higuain. Unless there is doubt that Cavani can return to form.
on the 19th July, 2016 at 3:23pm
Forget these players at provincial clubs that have 1-2 stars and hold onto them for dear life, you pay through the nose for them. 94m for Higuain, pfft you must be mad.

We should be buying world class players lost in a sea of stars in those big clubs with deep pockets. Keep looking there, that's where we found Tevez after all.
on the 19th July, 2016 at 12:16am
As it looks Higuain is staying in Napoli and i could not be more relieved. Higuains price shouldnt be higher than 60mil. As great as he is his age and his disappearing acts during crucial matches make his price ridiculous. And to add i think it would be irresponsible to ignore a price tag this high since serie a clubs are going bankrupt left and right and we struggle to compete financially with smaller clubs from England Spain and Germany.
on the 18th July, 2016 at 10:14pm
Juve are now massive and in prime position to dominate on all fronts. For Napoli to lose Higauin to Juve is a huge shock! I am amazed at Juve's turn around. If only Palermo could find such success!! And honestly, Zaza would be no great loss.
on the 18th July, 2016 at 9:02pm
I want Juve to win every match by 10-0 scores for the rest of my life. I wouldn't get bored of it either. It's exactly what every other club, their society and fans in Italy deserve.
Even though I don't think this move will not happen, Napoli's hopes for next season are destroyed. Same with Roma. And the Milan teams, lets just laugh.
on the 18th July, 2016 at 1:06am

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