Milan’s Ignazio Abate continues to move closer to a transfer to Russian club Zenit St.Petersburg.


Milan recently bolstered the backline with the arrival of 2006 World Cup winner Cristian Zaccardo in a deal that saw out-of-favor left back Djamel Mesbah move the other way to Parma. With Zaccardo being a highly versatile defender, capable of playing anywhere along the defensive line, Adriano Galliani looks set to offload Ignazio Abate in order to cut down the wage bill.

Milan based newspaper Gazzeta Dello Sport reported that the Russian outfit has finally agreed terms with Milan and the deal should be confirmed once personal terms are figured out between Zenit and Abate.

If the move does materialize this winter, Abate will be the third Italian member at the club. With Luciano Spalletti and Domenico Criscito at the GAZPROM owned outfit, Abate might be encouraged to make the move across Europe.

Rumors also began to fly about that Luca Antonini might follow suit and consider a transfer to Rubin Kazan. Although there has been no official statement from either of the clubs regarding this, it is publicly known that Antonini has caught the interest of a fair number of clubs including Turkish giants Galatasaray.

Amidst all this talk of departures from Milan, chief executive Adrian Galliani squashed rumors of any big name arrivals to the San Siro. The transfer guru said, “I don’t think that a big signing will be made. Kaka? I haven’t spoken to him, as I haven’t spoken to Drogba.”

Moving to Turin, Juventus confirmed the arrival of Fernando Llorente in the summer but their search for yet another striker continues. Latest reports suggest that Shanghai Shenhua’s Nicolas Anelka is their primary target. Talk of Anelka being released by the Chinese club is rife and representatives of the player and the Italian club met in Milan last night.