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Thursday, Sep. 6, 2012

Del Piero to join Sydney in A-League


SYDNEY — Former Italy and Juventus great Alessandro Del Piero will be unveiled as a Sydney FC player Wednesday, Australian media said, in a deal worth 2 million Australian dollars ($2.04 million) for a six-month contract.

The A-League club announced last week it had signed the World Cup-winning striker, only to be forced into an embarrassing U-turn on its website after a denial by Del Piero's camp.

The main sticking points were reportedly the player's business interests in Italy, where he employs as many as 40 people, and his ongoing lucrative sponsorship commitments that take up a lot of his time.

But Del Piero has now shaken hands with Sydney representatives in Turin after a week of intense negotiations and an official announcement was to be made later Wednesday, The Australian newspaper said.

Both The Australian and the Sydney Morning Herald said he was expected to be the highest paid footballer of any code in Australia.

If the deal is confirmed, the Italian will become the biggest signing in A-League history.

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