- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 16, 2014

ROME (AP) - Promising Argentine forward Juan Manuel Iturbe is joining Italian runner-up Roma in a €22 million ($30 million) transfer from Hellas Verona.

Roma says the 21-year-old Iturbe signed a five-year deal and the transfer price could reach €24.5 million ($33.2 million) with bonuses related to the Giallorossi’s success rate.

Iturbe impressed with Verona last season, showing speed with the ball, scoring ability with eight goals and talent on free kicks. At 1.72 meters (5-foot-7) he has been compared to Argentina great Lionel Messi.

Three-time defending Serie A champion Juventus had also shown interest in Iturbe.

Roma has been busy on the transfer market, having also signed left back Ashley Cole from Chelsea and midfielders Seydou Keita (Valencia), Urby Emanuelson (AC Milan) and Salih Ucan (Fenerbahce).

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