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Atalanta gazump Fiorentina, agree loan-to-buy deal for €15m-rated Chelsea midfielder — report

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Mario Pašalić looked set for Florence. Instead, he looks to be heading to Bergamo.

FC Tosno Saint Petersburg vs FC Spartak Moscow - Russian Premier League Photo by Epsilon/Getty Images

According to Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport (via Football Italia), Atalanta have beaten Fiorentina to the signature of Chelsea midfielder Mario Pasalic. The Croatian international had been a Fiorentina target since June, but they did their best dilly-dallying Chelsea impression, which gave Atalanta the opportunity to swoop in.

The deal is expected to be the customary “loan-to-buy” arrangement, carrying what is a reasonable €15m option to make the move permanent next summer.

In four years and zero appearances as a Chelsea player, Pasalic took a scenic tour of some of Europe’s biggest leagues, spending time at Elche in La Liga, AS Monaco in Ligue 1, AC Milan in Serie A, and Spartak Moscow in the Russian Premier League. His move to Russia was the only one that did not pan out in terms of playing time; he had been, more or less, a regular at all his other clubs.

Those years of experience moving all over Europe should serve well in the 23-year-old’s re-adaptation to Italy, and perhaps bring some some sense of stability to his career as well.