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OFFICIALLY OFFICIAL: Juventus sign Liverpool midfielder Emre Can

Liverpool v West Ham United - Premier League Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

There were days when it looked like Emre Can might go somewhere other than Turin. There were days where it looked a certainty that Can was going to sign with Juventus, with most of those coming relatively recently as the Old Lady was becoming the only option out there.

Because of the extended, drawn-out process of the whole transaction, Juventus director general Beppe Marotta said a little less than two weeks ago that he hopes that a positive outcome was going to be figured out in 10 days’ time.

That was on June 12.

On June 21, Can has officially become a Juventus player.

There is now no need to photoshop Can’s upper body onto Juventus’ new adidas kit. On Thursday, Can arrived in Turin to undergo his medicals and subsequently signed his much-talked about deal with Juve that sees him move from Liverpool on a free transfer.

The official statement from Juve’s website reads as follows:

Turin, 21 June 2018 - Juventus Football Club S.p.A. announces that a contract of employment with the player Emre Can, effective as of 1st July 2018 and expiring on 30 June 2022, has been signed. As a result of the signature of the agreement, Juventus will incur additional costs of € 16 million, to be paid over the next two financial years.

Can, who turned 24 years old back in January, spent the last four seasons at Liverpool. But, over the last 18 months or so, a drawn-out contract dispute saw his future at the club put into serious doubt. And as the 2017-18 season moved along, the possibility of Can moving on to another club became more and more likely. One of the most logical options the entire time just so happened to be Juventus.

Marotta, whose ability to bring in quality talent on free transfers is well documented at this point, always maintained that Can was an option and legitimate club target despite the fact that this was such a long process to get to where we are now.

On paper, Can will be a welcomed addition to a Juventus midfield that struggled to impact a good number of games last season. Where Can may fit into the puzzle still remains to be seen, but if manager Max Allegri is sticking with a 4-3-3 formation like he did for much of the 2017-18 campaign, Can is likely destined to become a starter on either side of Miralem Pjanic. (Although, as we know, the possibility of Allegri slow-playing a summer signing into the starting lineup is always a possibility.)

No matter what, though, Can is now a Juventus player. After all the reports, all the rumors and all the interviews Marotta gave discussing the move, it’s official. The only thing we’re left to talk about now is Can being a Juventus player — and that’s a welcome change from the past 12 months or so.