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Juventus to confirm four-year deal for Llorente

Turin: Juventus will confirm the signing of Fernando Llorente on Thursday, with the announcement of the free transfer concluding their patient pursuit of Athletic Bilbao`s most coveted player.

The 27-year-old has been frozen out of the picture at the Basque club after rejecting a new contract that would have seen his salary rise to €4.8 million a year.

Llorente will earn less at Juventus, €4.5 million per season, but had his heart set on Italy and has now agreed a four-year contract.

The Serie A holders attempted to sign Llorente in the summer but baulked at the €36 million buy-out clause written into the player`s contract.

Llorente has been free to speak to overseas clubs about a summer transfer since January 1.

The deal was to be announced by the Turin club on Wednesday, but was held back so as not to overshadow the new two-year contract extension agreed by captain Gianluigi Buffon.