By Italy correspondent Gianluigi Carrozzini
Watford are closing in on the signing of Roma winger Juan Iturbe as he prepares to fly to England to seal a loan move, Football Insider sources understand.
The Premier League club have finalised negotiations with the Serie A title challengers about a deal that includes a £1million loan fee and an option to buy at the end of the season for a further £11million.
A Roma source has told Football Insider that the finances of the deal have been agreed and the 22-year-old Argentine has given it the go-ahead.
He is now ready to fly to the UK and start training with the Premier League high-fliers, even though he can’t play for them until the transfer window officially opens on 1 January.
Roma spent an initial £16million plus add-ons to sign the player in 2014 following an impressive season at Verona.
Iturbe has failed to recreate that form at the Stadio Olimpico, scoring five times and creating five goals in 55 appearances, with his only goal this season coming against Frosinone in September.
Watford, who agreed a £7million deal to sign another Argentinian winger, Genoa’s Diego Perotti, in August only for the player to decide to remain in Italy, would like to spread the burden of goalscoring and creation beyond Odion Ighalo and Troy Deeney.
Their much-lauded front two have contributed a combined 17 goals during the Hornets’ unexpected rise to fifth place in the Premier League, while the remainder of the squad have two goals and two assists between them.
Ighalo maintained his outstanding form with a double in Sunday’s 3-0 win over Liverpool on Sunday to lift Watford to fifth in the Premier League.