Football: Ravanelli fancies Fiorentina move

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The Independent Online
FABRIZIO RAVANELLI, the former Middlesbrough striker, is desperate to return home to Italy so that he can seek revenge on another of his old clubs, Juventus.

The Italian international, currently with Marseilles but being linked with a move to Fiorentina, won the European Cup with Juventus in 1996 only weeks before being sold to Middlesbrough for pounds 7m. He scored 31 goals in his short stay the Teesside club - but it now appears that he has never forgiven the great Turin club for selling him.

"Fiorentina's interest really makes me happy," he said. "We'll have to see what happens, but joining them would enable me to take my revenge on those who sent me away in the first place."

Juventus and Fiorentina fans are traditionally deadly rivals and some in Florence would not welcome the arrival of a former Juve player. But the striker said: "If I were to make it to Florence one day I want everyone there to know that I'm someone who gives everything they have for the team's colours, whoever that might be."

In Spain, Real Madrid moved swiftly yesterday to slap down rumours of the imminent departure of Roberto Carlos. The Brazilian wing-back has been widely tipped to leave Real at the end of the season as part of a massive rebuilding programme at the club.

The Real president Lorenzo Sanz, who said this week the player had a buy-out clause of around pounds 70m in his contract, insisted he is not for sale. "Roberto Carlos is a Real Madrid player and we have no intention of selling him." Sanz said. "He is not available for transfer. There's nothing more to say."

His former club in Italy, Internazionale, have reportedly been leading the chase for the Brazilian, while Milan and Juventus have also been interested. His agent has insisted that the buy-out clause is in fact only around pounds 8m, which would be a more affordable fee.