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 Posted by Ben Gladwell
Jul 2, 2014

Juve, Milan in bidding war for Iturbe

Juan Iturbe joined Hellas Verona from Porto last summer.

Hellas Verona are resigned to losing Juan Iturbe this summer as a bidding war between Juventus and AC Milan has commenced.

- Transfer Talk: Barca open talks with Suarez

The 21-year-old forward made a big impression during his first season in Serie A, having joined Hellas just a year ago.

He arrived from Porto on the final day of last summer's transfer window and went on to score eight goals in 33 league appearances as the Gialloblu only narrowly missed out on a place in Europe in their first season back in the top flight following promotion.

Juventus appear to have moved ahead of Milan in the race to sign him by offering Fabio Quagliarella as part of a 23 million-euro bid, according to La Gazzetta dello Sport. Hellas are asking for 27 million, although an agreement is likely to be struck somewhere in between.

Gialloblu coach Andrea Mandorlini has not ruled out a third bidder beating them both to the Argentine, however.

"It currently looks like [Milan and Juve] are the most likely candidates, but who's to say there won't be a third club keen on his qualities?" Mandorlini said. "He's got such potential that he could talk to anybody. He would show his worth no matter where he played.

"We're going to miss him, but he's got to further his career. I'm happy to have been able to coach him. He's matured a great deal this year, but it's going to be impossible to keep him in Verona."

Mandorlini added that he would welcome Quagliarella in exchange for Iturbe to partner Luca Toni up front.

"He could work well in our attack," he said. "I like him. Certainly our number one striker is Toni, who got back in business last season and showed that he can lead this team, not only for his goals but also for his positive attitude. He's an example for the younger players."

Juve already completed one piece of business on Tuesday by signing Stefano Sturaro from Genoa, only to loan the 21-year-old back to the Ligurian club for the coming season.

Meanwhile, Milan may be about to lose defender Cristian Zaccardo, who has revealed he is in talks with a Turkish club, even though his heart does not seem to be set on a move.

"I've read in the papers about a possible move to Turkey and I can say there is some truth behind it -- I am negotiating with a club, but I'm very happy with Milan," he told Sky Sport Italia. "What I want most is to stay with the Rossoneri and play a better season than the one just ended."

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