Alexandre Pato has left Milan and joined Brasileirao club Corinthians for a reported fee of €15 million.
AC Milan striker Alexandre Pato has returned to Brazil to join Corinthians for a reported fee of €15 million, signing a four-year contract, according to Guardian. His six seasons at the Serie A club were injury-plagued and he missed large chunks of nearly every season.
The 2014 World Cup in Brazil may have something to do with this move as the Brazilian striker fell out of favor with Massimiliano Allegri behind Stephen El Shaarawy as a first-choice forward.
At a an average of a goal in just over two appearances, Pato scored 63 goals in 150 matches in all competitions for Milan.
A statement on Milan’s official website read:
“AC Milan can announce that Alexandre Pato has been sold outright to Sporting Club Corinthians Paulista.”
The Club World Cup champions have moved for the 23 year old striker, who has been a target of Premier League clubs like Manchester City and Chelsea in the past.
Pato is expected to join his new club for pre-season training before their away fixture at Paulista on January 20th, 2013. He thanked Milan for his time at San Siro in an open letter on the club’s site. He said:
“I wish to salute and especially thank everyone.
“From the president to the many people I worked with in these unforgettable years at Milan.
“I am goin to Brazil, to Corinthians, so I’ll have the opportunity to play consistently. It will not, however, be easy to forget Milan.
“I will always be tied to this jersey, the club colours and all the Rossoneri fans. Above all at this moment, my thoughts and my biggest thanks go to them.”
Pato’s departure comes after some of the other star players like Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva left the club in recent years and it is a worrying trend for a club like AC Milan.