Juventus sign Sissoko from Liverpool
© AFP

Mohamed Sissoko finally put pen to paper on a deal to join Juventus from Liverpool for 11 million euros, the Italian club announced on Tuesday. The Mali international, who travelled to Italy to complete the deal despite currently participating in the CAF Africa Cup of Nations, becomes Juve's second signing of the winter transfer window period following defender Guglielmo Stendardo's move from Lazio.

The Italian giants had long been tracking the former Valencia defensive midfielder, who had found his oppotunities limited at Liverpool this season. Sissoko, who was actually born in France, has signed a five-year deal that has a clause including an extra two-million-euro payment dependant on Juventus' success.

"I'm happy to have joined such an important club, this move certainly constitutes a step forward in my career," Sissoko told the Juventus TV channel. "I feel very excited to think about the possibility of playing with great players such as (Gianluigi) Buffon and (Alessandro) Del Piero and to work under (Claudio) Ranieri, a great coach who I already know from my time at Valencia."

Sissoko started his career at Auxerre but never played a match before moving to Valencia in 2003, where he won the title and UEFA Cup in his first season. A year later he moved to Liverpool where he added the FA Cup to his list of honours in 2006, but in his two and a half seasons on Merseyside he could never hold down a regular first team spot.

"He is an important element in the strengthening of our squad," said Juventus administrator Jean-Claude Blanc. "Despite being only 23 Sissoko is a player of great experience having played more than 30 Champions League matches.

"He has also played many matches in big leagues and for his country."