Manchester United have signed one of Italy’s best prospects in the form of striker Davide Petrucci from Italian club Roma, much to the fury of the Italian club and press, according to the Daily Telegraph.
After just missing out on Welsh starlet Aaron Ramsey, United moved to sign Italian youngster Petrucci and will pay the Rome club a compensation deal worth around £200,000, whilst paying the youngster around £95,000-a-year.
Petrucci, 16, has been labeled as “Italy’s next Francesco Totti” and wowed audiences by scoring 14 goals in 19 matches for Roma’s prestiged youth team, finishing as Roma’s top goal scorer. The star also earned a call-up to Italy’s Under-17 team after impressive performances.
Most of Petrucci’s £95,000-a-year will go to pay for regular flights back to Italy for the youngster, whilst the star’s father has been offered a job as a groundsman at Old Trafford to ensure Petrucci is not alone whilst in Manchester.
However, the move has caused fury among the Italian community and press, with local paper Il Romanista saying: “It is a nightmare, Manchester United have dealt us another low blow, stealing Petrucci from under our noses, probably the best product of our youth system. In three to four years, he will be worth 100 times as much.”
Petrucci, a self-confessed Roma fan, could have possibly made the break into the first-team next season, however with Roma only offering £16,000-a-year to the youngster, United’s big money contract lured the striker away from the Stadio Olimpico.
Bruno Conti, Roma’s technical director, said the club refused to offer Petrucci an improved contract due to the fact that it would upset the other youngsters at the club and the Petrucci would have been given his chance to shine next season with possible first-team opportunities, leading to an improved contract.
Petrucci tried to explain his decision to local press by saying: “A month ago Roma offered me a contract at the minimum rate, without clarifying whether it would be for three or five years,”
” I asked for a bit of time to think about it, Man Utd had already made their proposal, but Roma only gave me three days and left me out of the squad. To a certain extent they closed the door on me while Man Utd opened a big door.”
“You can’t just forget six years at Roma. I was born a Roma fan and I will be one for the rest of my life,” he said. “But this is a great opportunity, I’m going to to the strongest club in the world. It was difficult to say no, even if I would have been very happy to spend my whole career at Roma.”
Petrucci is now set to join United at the club’s prestiged academy on July 1st, where the youngster will begin training with the club.
[Source: The Daily Telegraph, Il Romanista]