Roma sell El Shaarawy and buy Pau Lopez


An eventful start of the week for Roma, which sold one of their longest tenured players and found their new starting goalkeeper. Early on Monday morning, Shanghai Shenhua made official the arrival of Stephan El Shaarawy, who had spent the last four years in the Italian Capital, proving to be a very reliable contributor. In a down year for Edin Dzeko, he was the team’s leading scorer in Serie A in 2018/2019 with his 11 goals.

The 26-year-old winger had just a year left on his contract, hence the club decided to cash in on him and accept the €16M offer. The forward initially refused the move, but was eventually wooed by the Chinese team’s rich proposal. He departs after collecting 139 appearances and notching 40 goals with the Giallorossi. They could obviously opt to add somebody else, but they already have to players who could fill in the void: Justin Kluivert, who could take advantage of his opportunity as his launching pad, and the veteran Diego Perotti.

They needed a new #1 since Robin Olsen flamed out and lost his job to Antonio Mirante in April and they found him in the Spanish youngster Pau Lopez, who was officially acquired from Real Betis on Wednesday for €23.5, plus La Lupa reportedly renounced to the rights on a future sale of Antonio Sanabria. He is the most expensive purchase in that role in the club’s history.

The 24-year-old goalie has penned a five-year contract: a product of Espanyol’s youth academy, where he played until 2018 barring a fruitless loan spell to Tottenham, he accumulated 100 appearances in La Liga, conceding 143 goals and keeping 26 clean sheets.

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