Gonzalo Higuain was a very good player for Juventus.
He was very good even though he had the weight of a then-club-record transfer fee attached to him from the second he walked through the doors in Vinovo for the very first time. He was a very good striker even though he had expectations that he was one of the missing pieces and had the bar set incredibly high after scoring a Serie A single-season record number of goals the season before he moved to Juventus.
Essentially, Higuain — no matter if you agreed with forking out that much money to activate his buyout clause with Napoli — was far, far, far from a failure during his time with Juventus.
That time in Turin, however, has no come to an end.
Higuain, now 32 years old and clearly not the player he once was, has officially terminated his contract with Juventus, the club announced Thursday, after the player’s agent/brother made the trip to Italy to finish negotiations last week. With Higuain now a free agent, he is expected to following former Juve teammate Blaise Matuidi to the United States and sign with Major League Soccer side Inter Miami. Higuain — who arrived in South Florida late last week — will reportedly become Inter Miami’s highest paid player at a salary of €7.5 million per season after he has signed a contract through 2022.
From Juventus’ official website:
Turin, 17 September 2020 – Juventus Football Club S.p.A. announces the mutual termination of the contract with the player Gonzalo Gerardo Higuain. This operation generates a negative economic effect of approximately € 18.3 million on the 2019/2020 financial year due to the residual value write-down of the registration rights of the player.
Juventus’ Board of Directors has been convened for tomorrow, 18 September 2020, to examine and approve the new draft financial statements as of 30 June 2020 in order to take into account the negative economic effect on the 2019/2020 financial year generated by the aforementioned contractual termination. The draft financial statements as of 30 June 2020 will be submitted to the Shareholders’ Meeting already called for 15 October 2020.
Thank you for everything, Pipita!— JuventusFC (@juventusfcen) September 17, 2020
This past year, Higuain was one of the biggest early season surprises, with his contributions both as a starter and off the bench becoming something that few thought was possible. The fact that he wasn’t able to be sold because of his massive €7.5 million net wages made his inclusion on the roster look more like a summer transfer market failure rather than something that could actually work out in Juve’s favor, but it did.
But, as the season went on and his form cooled off from his fast start, the rumors only continued that the 2019-20 campaign was going to be the last one for Higuain in a Juventus shirt. His hesitation to come back from Argentina during the shutdown in Italy is well documented, with his mother’s health status as well as the ongoing pandemic playing big roles in him potentially not returning for the start of training. As it turned out, Higuain was one of the last Juve players to report back to Turin.
Now he’s off to Miami and a league where he won’t be the first Higuain to participate in.
So long, Pipita. It was fun. Please enjoy Miami as much as you can ... when it’s safe to do so and there’s no longer a global pandemic going on. So, maybe just put off visits to South Beach until 2021, my man.