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Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Juventus seal 8.2m Sissoko deal and keep Tiago

Juventus have completed the signing of Mohamed Sissoko from Liverpool - but will not allow fellow midfielder Tiago to leave during the January transfer window.

Tottenham had been interested in the former Chelsea player but Juventus sporting director Alessio Secco stated the 26-year-old would be given more time to prove himself with the Italian club.

Secco told Gazzetta dello Sport: 'We have received several inquiries regarding Tiago.

'Tottenham have been following him in the last couple of days but they have now changed their mind. Therefore, there is no time for the transfer to be completed.

'Tiago is not on the market. He will be given time to prove his best qualities.'

Tiago joined Juve from Lyon last summer but has struggled to make an impact under Claudio Ranieri, making just nine Serie A appearances this season.

He may see even fewer opportunities over the second half of the campaign with Sissoko signing a four-and-a-half-year deal in Turin.

Juventus signed Sissoko for 8.2million.The Mali midfielder jetted to Italy at the weekend for a medical before heading back to the African Nations Cup in Ghana, where his side face Ivory Coast later on Tuesday.

Sissoko, who went to Anfield in 2005 but fell out of favour following the arrival of Javier Mascherano, has signed a five-year contract with the Turin club, a statement said.

The former Valencia player replaces Argentine Sergio Almiron, who was sent on loan to Monaco after an ineffective first few months at Juve, having signed from Empoli in the close season.

'I am happy to come to such an important club, this experience is certainly a step forward in my career,' Sissoko said in a statement.

'I am excited at the thought of soon being able to play with great champions and to work again with Claudio Ranieri, a great coach who I already appreciated during my time at Valencia.'

If Mali reach the African Nations Cup final on Feb. 10, Juve could be without their new signing until mid February.

Juve, third in Serie A, signed Lazio defender Guglielmo Stendardo on loan until June on Monday and also announced that Aston Villa's Olof Mellberg would be joining the club in July.

Sissoko's move was also due to be sealed on Monday but was delayed slightly. The fee will be paid in three instalments and could rise by a further two million euros depending on Juve's performance.




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