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Lanzafame deal close

PUBLISHED: 13:51 29 May 2008 | UPDATED: 13:20 05 October 2010

By JONATHAN CLEGG WEST Ham s pursuit of Davide Lanzafame is close to a positive conclusion just days after the move for the Italy Under-21 star looked to be dead and buried. The Hammers have revived the deal following Lanzafame s decision to turn down a

By JONATHAN CLEGG

WEST Ham's pursuit of Davide Lanzafame is close to a positive conclusion just days after the move for the Italy Under-21 star looked to be dead and buried.

The Hammers have revived the deal following Lanzafame's decision to turn down a move to from Juventus to Serie A rivals Palermo.

Juventus had agreed a deal with Palermo last week that would send Lanzafame to the Sicily club in a co-ownership deal as part of the exchange that will see Brazilian forward Amauri end up in Turin.

But Lanzafame has now rejected a move to Palermo in an attempt to force through a loan move to West Ham, where technical director Gianluca Nani has identified the 21-year-old as a key target.

"Palermo and West Ham are both huge clubs," said Lanzafame. "But at my age I think it would be beneficial to have an experience abroad, which would enhance me not only as a footballer, but also from a linguistic and lifestyle point of view."

The move to Upton Park would also enhance Lanzafame's bank balance, with the Hammers understood to have offered him a £15,000-a-week deal - double what he would have received from Palermo.

The Hammers are currently negotiating with Juventus and hope to tie up a season-long loan deal in the coming days, with an option to make the move permanent at the end of next season if player and club are satisfied.

The forward, who is regarded as one of the most promising young players in Italy, has been bolstering his reputation this week with a series of impressive displays for the Under-21 side at the Toulon tournament in France.

Lanzafame scored Italy's opening goal in last week's 2-1 win over Turkey and has earned praise from Under-21 boss Pierluigi Casiraghi, who became the latest figure to draw comparisons with Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo.

Lanzafame was likened to the Portugal winger by Bari manager Antonio Conte, who watched the striker score 10 goals on loan at the Serie B club last season.

Now former Chelsea forward Casiraghi has been struck by the similarities between the two players.

He said: ""We can say that David Lanzafame resembles Cristiano Ronaldo. He has explosive power in his legs, speed on the ground, a sense of goal.


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