St Gallen defender, Giuseppe Mazzarelli, has finally completed his transfer to the Italian Serie-A side, Bari. The 28-year-old has signed a four-year contract.
Mazzarelli will join three other Swiss internationals playing in Italy. David Sesa and Kubilay Türkyilmaz are also competing in the country's top division (with Napoli and Brescia respectively), while Franco Di Jorio plays in the Serie-B for Salernitana.
Although Italian domestic football does not restart until October, Mazzarelli's move takes immediate effect. Despite being part of last season's championship winning side at St Gallen, the nature of his departure is likely to leave a bitter taste in the mouths of the fans.
After Mazzarelli first announced his intention to join Bari, reports emerged that he had already signed a contract with Serie-B side, Ancona. When confronted by the St Gallen board, Mazzarelli initially denied the story. Then, when Ancona produced the signed contract, the player insisted that it contained a clause allowing him to accept any offer from a Serie-A club.
Aside from the off-pitch intrigues, Mazzarelli's final appearance for St Gallen on the pitch also ended in shame. In the final minutes of the club's Champions League qualifier against Galatasaray, the defender was sent off after receiving a second yellow-card. The dismissal ensured that Mazzarelli was suspended for the return leg in Istanbul.
Mazzarelli played 43 matches for St Gallen, following spells at FC Zurich, Grasshoppers and Young Boys Berne.
swissinfo with agencies
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