Gilardino Signs For Viola
Fiorentina have confirmed the arrival of Alberto Gilardino from Milan after both clubs reached a deal for the under-fire striker.
The former Parma hit-man has been playing second fiddle at the Rossoneri for the past couple of seasons and he has spent the majority of the campaign on the bench.
His performances were woeful and he has been quickly shipped out to La Viola who have confirmed the deal.
A statement on the club's official website reads: "Fiorentina would like to communicate that the club has signed Alberto Gilardino from AC Milan on a permanent basis.
"Gilardino will be unveiled to the press at 12.30 on Thursday at the Artemio Franchi stadium."
Reports in Italy claim the Viola paid €15m for the striker, he will earn €1.65m per season plus bonuses and he has signed a five year deal.
The striker is Fiorentina's third signing of the current transfer window following the arrivals of Felipe Melo and Stevan Jovetic.
|Serie A Week 29 - 19/3/08 (19.30 UK)|
|Milan 1 - 2 Sampdoria|
|Maggio 12 (S), Delvecchio 25 (S), Paloschi 71 (M)|
Milan tumbled to a shock home defeat that sees Sampdoria close to within a point and the Champions League dreams perhaps evaporate completely.
Few would have expected it at the start of the season, but this was effectively a head-to-head for UEFA Cup football. Just two points divided the teams going in. Milan were still smarting from their 2-1 loss at Roma and were without Ronaldo, Pippo Inzaghi, Marcos Cafu, Serginho and Yoann Gourcuff. Antonio Cassano continued to sit out his five-match ban and was joined by Daniele Franceschini on the naughty step.
Samp had not won here since a 3-2 result on February 2, 1997. Zeljko Kalac recovered from injury to start this game and took the sting out of an early Emiliano Bonazzoli attempt.
Milan were forced to change their tactics when Kaka limped off after just 10 minutes to make way for teenage striker Alberto Paloschi.
The Blucerchiati were more confident and took a deserved lead after 12 minutes. The Milan defence was caught napping, as the ball took two touches from Sampdoria players in the box before Christian Maggio's tap-in from five yards.
Massimo Ambrosini had penalty appeals waved away for a Maggio shirt tug and Paloschi fired wide of the near post from Clarence Seedorf's pass.
Instead, Sampdoria doubled their lead. Seedorf's backheel for Alexandre Pato was intercepted and they completed a classic counter-attack with Gennaro Delvecchio's finish.
Sergio Volpi's fierce free kick flashed across the face of goal with several Samp players flying in to get the decisive touch.
Alessandro Nesta had a rare crack at goal from 30 metres that was not too far off the target, then Seedorf was flagged offside - incorrectly - and fired wide anyway with only the goalkeeper to beat.
Maggio could so easily have made it 3-0 on the counter only to blast over the bar.
A well-timed Daniele Gastaldello tackle stopped Paloschi from scoring just inside the box. Alberto Gilardino came off the bench at half-time for a more attacking formation and with his first touch had a header deflected over from a corner. Gila also felt he deserved a penalty for a Stefano Lucchini challenge.
Milan were unlucky not to re-open the game as Pirlo's free kick smacked the base of the upright thanks to a Castellazzi fingertip save.
The Rossoneri finally got a goal back through their liveliest and most effective player - 18-year-old Paloschi - who got a glancing header to a Pato cross on 71 minutes.
Kakha Kaladze had more penalty appeals for a shirt-tug and Giuseppe Favalli's snapshot flashed past the near post.
Lucchini saw red in stoppages for a second bookable offence and Pirlo's free kick took a series of deflections in front of the goal.
Gennaro Gattuso was so nearly the San Siro hero with the captain's armband on, but Castellazzi did well to palm his shot out for a corner.
Milan: Kalac; Oddo, Nesta, Kaladze, Jankulovski (Favalli 55); Gattuso, Pirlo, Ambrosini (Gilardino 46); Kaka (Paloschi 10), Seedorf; Pato
Sampdoria: Castellazzi; Lucchini, Gastaldello, Accardi; Maggio, Sammarco, Volpi, Palombo, Pieri (Zenoni 74); Delvecchio (Ziegler 88), Bonazzoli (Bellucci 76)
Sent off: Lucchini 91 (S)
MILAN - Congratulations to Alberto Gilardino and his partner Alice Bregoli. The small Ginevra was born today at 10.11, the first daughter of the couple. All the best wishes to the new dad and mum from all the Milanisti of the small child.
Click on the picture to see more or click here
"I'm very happy because it went very well, I came in and I immediately scored, giving the three points to the team. It was truly a great emotion, especially after the week I went through, because I'm an emotional guy and certain things hurt me. [awww] The words said by the President filled me with happiness because this means he always has faith in me too.
It was important to win in order to shorten the distance from the fourth place, but it's not enough yet. Now we must think about the away game at Bergamo on Wednesday."