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OFFICIAL: Bonaventura signs two-year contract

The veteran midfielder joins on a Bosman and brings creativity, versatility, and experience to the Viola engine room.

Italy Portrait Session Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images

We were initially skeptical, but it turns out that Fiorentina has indeed signed Giacomo Bonaventura. The free agent signed a 2-year contract (no official word on the amount but we’re hearing €1.8 million) following the usual battery of medical tests and has already joined Giuseppe Iachini and company in training (sans cargo shorts, thank goodness).

As we’ve previously discussed, we’re not sure what to think of this move yet. If Jack has been penciled in as a starter from day one, this feels like a step back. His injury history and defensive output (he’s more willing than able on the back foot) make him a doubt for Beppe’s high-intensity pressing scheme, but as the first sub off the bench, his dribbling and ability to pick the incisive pass make him a perfect fit.

His arrival shouldn’t rule out a move for Lucas Torreira, which still sounds quite possible, but could spell the end of Marco Benassi’s Viola career; with Bonaventura, Gaetano Castrovilli, Alfred Duncan, Borja Valero, and maybe Sofyan Amrabat all ready for the most advanced midfield role in the 3-5-2, it’s hard to see where Benassi could fit.

This is the sort of low-cost, low-risk, high-reward move that smart teams (generally not Fiorentina for the past half decade) make. The former Atalanta and AC Milan star just turned 31 and should still have a couple of good years left in his legs. He has a decent chance to feature in the opener against Torino next week and, should he shoulder the burden of creating goals like we think he can, could be one of the most underrated signings of the season for this club.

Welcome, Jack. We’re getting forward to knowing you better.