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Giorgio Chinaglia
"He's worth the money"
 real 28k

Tuesday, 11 July, 2000, 16:50 GMT
Lazio's 40m Crespo deal
Crespo joins Lazio in record deal
Crespo joins Lazio in record deal
Italian champions Lazio are poised to sign Parma's Argentine striker Hernan Crespo in a world record 40m package deal.

The player however maintains that he is still a Parma player and has expressed amazement at the news, which suggests that there is still some fine tuning to be done.

Crespo is being lined up to join fellow countryman Gabrial Batistuta in Rome after he moved from Fiorentina to AS Roma earlier this summer.

Lazio have put together a move which involves a 16m cash payment, plus the transfer of Argentina star Matias Almeyda and Portugal's Sergio Conceicao to Parma.

Crespo, however, claimed the move was still shrouded in confusion, saying: "My agent is in the United States and Lazio president Sergio Cragnotti hasn't shown his face here.

"I am at a training camp in Argentina and no-one has called me, so for the moment I am a Parma player.

"I am amazed at this news. I have not signed anything and I have no idea at what stage the negotations are at."

And Conceicao was unhappy, insisting: "I deserved greater respect for what I have given to this club.

"I still know nothing about it, no-one has told me I could be sold."

The whole deal is reported in Italy as beating the 31m cash deal that took Christian Vieri from Lazio to Inter Milan last summer.

Leading scorer

Crespo, who played four seasons with Parma, became the club's all-time leading scorer last April on his way to scoring a career-best 22 goals last season.

Lazio, who won the Serie A title in the final week of the season, have already signed Claudio Lopez, another Argentine forward, from Valencia this summer.

Lazio were also reported to be ready to unload Chliean striker Marcelo Salas to Inter, but the prospect of a deal receded when they insisted their line up of strikers was complete.

Lazio, meanwhile, have brushed aside suggestions that they might be stripped of the Serie A title

It has been claimed Argentine midfielder Juan Veron got his Italian citizenship illegally.

For six months, prosecutors have been looking into allegations that the citizenship application involved forged documents and are expected to ask for indictments.

Among those under investigation are Veron, two of his lawyers, and Lazio president Sergio Cragnotti.

But Lazio spokesman Giuseppe De Mita insisted: "At most, we might be penalized in the coming season."

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