£20m misfit Aquilani joins Juve on year loan

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Liverpool’s Italian midfielder Alberto Aquilani is to join Juventus on a one-year loan, pending a medical tomorrow.

The clubs have agreed a deal for the 26-year-old, who cost the Reds £20m from Roma last summer.

Aquilani has struggled for form and fitness since arriving as a replacement for Xabi Alonso. He was left out of Thursday’s win over Trabzonspor in the Europa League to remain eligible for other clubs. “It is very important that he plays regular football,” said Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson. “I can’t promise him that so if a loan move to Italy could help him in that respect it might be good for all parties.”

Messi on the mark

Lionel Messi scored a hat-trick to lead Barcelona to a 4-0 victory over Sevilla and a 5-3 aggregate win in the Spanish Super Cup. Messi took control after Sevilla’s Abdoulay Konko had put the ball in his own net early on. Rafa Benitez enjoyed success in his first competitive match in charge of Internazionale, a 3-1 win over Roma in the Italian Super Cup.

Pitman’s Bristol bound

Bristol City are set to sign the Bournemouth striker Brett Pitman if he passes a medical tomorrow. The clubs announced yesterday that an undisclosed fee had been agreed, while the 22-year-old Pitman has agreed personal terms. The news comes days after the Jersey-born forward turned a move down to Blackpool.