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Where have all the "hard men" gone?

ESPN FC & Howler
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PSG confirm €42 million Pastore signing

Argentina playmaker Javier Pastore has completed his long-protracted departure from Palermo, after PSG announced his arrival in a deal worth €42 million.

Pastore, 22, has emerged as one of the most sought-after young talents in Europe over the past 18 months, attracting interest from the likes of AC Milan, Chelsea and Manchester City.

However, Palermo president Mauro Zamparini repeatedly stated that he would not allow his prized asset to go on the cheap and he has got his wish after PSG, backed by the deep pockets of their Qatari owners, shelled out €42 million to bring the talented midfielder to the Parc des Princes.

Chelsea were believed to have stepped up their interest in Pastore in recent weeks but were pipped to the post by ambitious PSG, who secured his services on a five-year contract.

"Javier Pastore signed on Saturday afternoon for five seasons with PSG. He will wear number 27," a statement on PSG's official website said. "The Argentine midfielder (22) will be presented to the press on Monday afternoon at the Parc des Princes."

Pastore's arrival breaks PSG's previous transfer record - the €33.5 million they paid Real Madrid for Nicolas Anelka in 2000.

The Ligue 1 side will be hoping to challenge for major honours both domestically and in the Europa League this season after also signing Momo Sissoko, Milan Bisevac, Jeremy Menez, Blaise Matuidi, Salvatore Sirigu, Kevin Gameiro and Nicolas Douchez.

Ahead of his move, Pastore told Eurosport: "What I am experiencing is very nice. This will be an important moment in my career, the most important so far.

"I am not joining a league as big as England or Spain, but Le Championnat de France will bring me a lot on a personal level and for my sporting improvement.

"At Chelsea or in another club, I would have not played as often as I could hope. I believe at Paris I will play and will be able to show my value."

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