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 By Ben Gladwell

AC Milan sign Nikola Kalinic on loan from Fiorentina with obligation to buy

ESPN FC's Gab Marcotti discusses AC Milan's impressive start and VAR's debut in the first week of Serie A action.

AC Milan have confirmed the signing of Nikola Kalinic from Serie A rivals Fiorentina on an initial season-long loan deal followed by an obligation to make the move permanent next summer.

Kalinic, 29, has signed a contract through to 2021 with Milan and becomes their 11th new signing this summer, and most probably their last.

"I'm very happy to be here," Kalinic, who will wear the No. 7 shirt for his new club, said. "There's a new cycle here now and I hope everything goes well. All I can say is that I'll do my best to win. I'm definitely ready to sacrifice.

"I need to continue what I did with Fiorentina last year with Milan. I don't feel pressure, I'm just focused on how I have to play.

"The number 7? My number is 9, but Andre Silva has that. I chose 7 because it was free."

The Croatia international could make his debut at the San Siro when Milan host Cagliari on Sunday, although he cannot play in the second leg of their Europa League playoff with Shkendija on Thursday.

Vincenzo Montella's side announced Kalinic's signing with a statement on their official website on Tuesday, after he had successfully passed his medical on Monday.

After hearing of Milan's interest, Kalinic took sick leave and refused to train for Fiorentina before his wish of joining the San Siro club, for a fee reported to be in the region of €25 million, was granted.

He joins Leonardo Bonucci, Andre Silva, Hakan Calhanoglu, Andrea Conti, Franck Kessie, Lucas Biglia, Mateo Musacchio, Antonio Donnarumma, Ricardo Rodriguez and Fabio Borini in joining Milan this summer, with a combined outlay of over €200m.

Formerly of Hajduk Split, Kalinic spent two seasons with Blackburn Rovers before moving to Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk, where he caught the eye of Fiorentina, joining them in 2015. He made 69 Serie A appearances for the Viola, scoring 27 goals.

Milan started the Serie A season with a 3-0 win at Crotone after winning 6-0 against Shkendija in the first leg of their Europa League playoff last week.

Ben Gladwell reports on Serie A, the Italian national team and the Bundesliga for ESPN FC, UEFA and the Press Association. @UEFAcomBenG.

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