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Fiorentina boss Montella: Cuadrado will join Chelsea, we’re getting Salah
The 22-year-old Egypt international was on the verge of completing a move to AS Roma from Chelsea exactly a week ago after both clubs reached a verbal agreement over the transfer, but then the Giallorossi pulled out of the deal.
Mohamed Salah will now join Fiorentina on loan as a part of the €33m deal that will see Juan Cuadrado head to the Blues, coach Vicenzo Montella has confirmed.
However, the Italian coach couldn’t help but express his disappointment in losing Viola star Cuadrado, saying it’ll be hard for the Chelsea winger to be ‘on the same level’ as the Colombia international.
“Honestly, it was something that had to be done,” Montella said in a press conference ahead of the Genoa game, as translated by FootballItalia.
“As a coach I’m disappointed, but on a pragmatic level the fee is so high that it’s worth it.
“It’s nobody’s fault, we must absolutely not be distracted, and offer excuses, we must be supremely focused.
“He [Cuadrado] always demonstrated the utmost professionalism, and joy in playing. I’m happy for him, because he’s gone to play in a very good team.
“At the moment I’m a bit sad, there are more resources in other leagues, that’s a fact. Our [Italian football’s] appeal is diminished.
“We’re getting a player in Salah who will have to adapt to our football, this is a league that’s different from the Swiss and the English.
“Cuadrado can also play in more positions than he can. He’ll serve as an understudy to Joaquin in a 3-5-2, unless we change the formation, but it would be a shame to do that.
“He’s a player who offers guarantees in attack as part of a 4-3-3, or as a second striker. He’s a top player though.
“I hope we can find a place for him in our five-man midfield, but it’s hard to be on the same level as Cuadrado.”
With completing his move to Fiorentina, Salah is expected to link up with fellow Egyptian Ahmed Hegazy.