Lorenzo Insigne to remain in Italy contention despite MLS move
The 30-year-old has agreed to join Toronto FC and will arrive in the summer for the second part of the 2022 Major League Soccer regular season.
Lorenzo Insigne will be the face of Major League Soccer during the 2022 regular season and will join Toronto FC in the summer once his contract with Napoli expires. The Italian playmaker will leave the Serie A side after 15 years and will become the highest-paid player in the history of MLS.
Playing in MLS won’t affect his participation with Italy
Insigne signed a four-year contract with TFC, with a club option to extend it for one more season, and will earn $13 million per campaign. The Canadian-based team has had a very positive experience with Italian stars, because Sebastian Giovinco helped them win the 2017 MLS Cup before leaving for Al Hilal.
Even though Giovinco broke all individual records during his time in Major League Soccer, he was rarely called up to the Italian national team. The ‘Atomic Bomb’ was omitted from Italy’s Euro 2016 squad and from the 2018 World Cup qualifiers. At that time Gian Piero Ventura was in charge of the Azzurri and he said that he was being left out because he played in MLS.
So before Insigne decided to join Toronto FC, he talked to Roberto Mancini, head coach of the Italian national team, to make sure he would not be omitted from consideration for future squads, particularly with the World Cup right around the corner. Andrea D’Amico, who handled Insigne’s move to MLS, talked about the conversation the 30-year-old had with the Italy boss.
“Insigne’s transfer to the North American league will not create any problems for the national team coach Mancini. The player spoke with the coach before making this decision, also because he is one of the most experienced players in the Azzurri squad,” D’Amico told GR Parlamento.
“The idea of this negotiation was born after the European Championship. With the president of the Canadian club we established priorities, and Lorenzo was the first. I’m not Insigne’s agent, but I know that there were several teams interested. However, no offer, in terms of quantity and quality, was comparable to that of Toronto.”
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