We've heard and read it all, the saga has been going on for weeks: Mario Gomez wants to come to Fiorentina and Fiorentina wanted him badly as well. However, Bayern Munich was loath to let such a high valued commodity go for the seemingly low amount that Fiorentina were able to pay.
The negotiations heated up as La Viola claimed he was too expensive and the German squad claimed the Italians were trying to commit highway robbery and it seemed as if the magic just wasn't going to happen...
Then the Padron stepped in.
In the early hours today, Andrea Della Valle called "The Kaiser" Karl-Heinz Rummenigge and hashed out the deal.
Reportedly, Fiorentina will pay 16 million Euros, with an additional 4 million written in as performance bonuses. Fiorentina will have 4 years to pay off the amount.
The 6 foot 2 inch Gomez, who has over 130 goals in the Bundesliga and 25 goals for the German National Team, is expected to be announced in Florence tomorrow, or the next day, his 28th Birthday.
Among his achievements are 50 goals scored in the calendar year of 2011 and THIRTEEN Bundesliga hat tricks.
Mario Gomez was born in Riedlingen, Biberach, Baden-Württemberg, in the south-west of Germany and was raised in nearby Unlingen. He is of Spanish-German descent.
He started his youth league career with his local team, SV Unlingen and moved to the VfB Stuttgart youth team in 2001.
He was promoted to the second Stuttgart team, which plays in the third league in 2003, made his first appearance for the first team squad in March of 2004, in a Champions League match against Chelsea and made his first Bundesliga appearance 2 months later.
In 2005 he was promoted to the first squad permanently, getting 30 apps and scoring 6 goals.
in 2006-07, Gomez came out strong, being among the goal scoring leaders in Germany before breaking his hand and tearing a ligament in March. he sat out 2 months, but came back two weeks before the end of the season, scoring almost immediately on his return, leading Stuttgart to the win to put them 2 points ahead in the Bundesliga race, which they then won on the final day of the season.
Gomez also played in the German Cup, DFB-Pokal, leading his team to the final, where they lost.
For his performance, Gomez was voted German Footballer of the Year for 2007.
Gomez followed that performance up with another 19 goals the next season, second only to someone we all know, Luca Toni, who had scored 24 for Bayern Munich.
Following Toni's example, Gomez went on to score 24 goals in 2008-09, earning third place in goal scoring, behind Grafite and Dzeko, including 3 goals against Werder Bremen and 4 goals against eventual league winners Vfl Wolfsberg.
By then the big club in Germany had notice his exploits and dished up an, at that time, German record transfer fee, somewhere between 30 and 35 million Euros.
Gomez had a tough start in Munich, scoring only 10 goals in his first season in 29 appearances.
2010-11 saw Gomez overcome that slow first season as he went on to score the most goals in the league in the next season, with 28 in-league goals.
Gomez also had 11 more goals in other competitions that season, including 8 in the Champions League, tied for second with Samuel Eto', 4 behind Lionel Messi. Bayern bowed out in the first knockout round, however, to Inter.
Gomez followed that year up with a big 2011-2012, scoring 26 Bundesliga goals and 12 Champions League goals, leading the German powerhouse to the CL finals , where they eventually lost a heart breaker to Chelsea, on penalties.
Gomez went on to score three times that summer in the UEFA 2012 Euros, tying Fernando Torres for most goals scored, Torres won the glory due to fewer minutes played.
All the recent playing time wore on his body, however, and Gomez had ankle surgery after the Euros, which delayed his return to the Bundesliga. In a Wally Pipp-like moment, Mario Mandžukić stepped up for Bayern Munich and lead the league in goals, relegated Gomez to the bench after his eventual return. Gomez still managed 11 goals in 21 Bundesliga appearances, third on the scoring list.
Gomez adds to the Viola International players list as well, with 58 caps for his country. His first appearance was in 2007 against Switzerland and he scored a goal in a German victory, his second cap was in a Euro Qualifier against San Marino and he scored a brace.
Gomez went on to play in Euro 2008 and World Cup 2010, but failed to score, earning the, perhaps, undeserved reputation of being unable to score in the big tournaments.
He proved that wrong in Euro 2012 with three goals.
“I have contrasting emotions, as I am leaving the strongest team in the world and cannot hide a certain nostalgia,” Gomez told the official Bayern channel.
“I love football and wanted to play more, which is why I decided to leave. The contact with Fiorentina started some time ago and I was immediately struck by their very ambitious project.
“I preferred Italy to Spain and Fiorentina really impressed me. The Viola play such great football, I can’t wait to start.”
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Mario also comes to Firenze with his own song:
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According to reports, Fiorentina will almost certainly have to sell a player or two to finance this deal, but which players those will be is yet to be seen.
Stevan Jovetic is under contract for more than a year and has a very large buy out clause, which no team, it seems, yet wants to meet, so his future is very much up in the air.
With that big price tag, however, it's possible that Fiorenitna will refuse to move him this year and who knows, maybe the purchase will demonstrate Fiorentina's commitment to achieving lofty goals and will serve to inspire our young man from Montenegro.
Adem Ljajic, also reportedly, is refusing to sign an extension, so his sale seems to be all but a formality. Fiorentina will certainly be looking for at least 10 million Euros for him, that would be half the amount for Gomez right there.
Another source of revenue for the squad is season ticket sales. The club has already received over 13,000 subscriptions and are on a pace to exceed the amount from last season.
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