It’s official: Oguchi “Gooch” Onyewu to AC Milan

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With Gooch looking destined to be an Ajax defender, AC Milan has swooped in and taken Gooch away from a long list of suitors. The Rossoneri were certainly not the Italian team that everyone predicted was making a bid for the towering center-half, but nobody can argue that the move makes a ton of sense for both parties.

Milan gets a young (well, younger than the rest of their squad), veteran center-half that is a truly dominating presence on the field. He’ll likely get paired with smooth, skillful defenders like Alessandro Nesta, Massimo Oddo, and Gianluca Zambrotta. His physical and aerial presence will go a long way toward strengthening a backline that struggled with physical attackers like Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Amauri, and Adrian Mutu. Being that Onyewu was free, Milan made a brilliant move to strengthen their backline without spending money.

For Onyewu, the move is hard to top. He’ll be part of an aging squad where he’ll be expected to make the majority of starts at center-back, as the Milan defenders aren’t spring chickens. He’s also moving to a Champion’s League squad, where he’ll get to face off against the best of the best – the first American field player to do so for a major club.

For the US fans, this is fantastic. AC Milan’s games are shown almost every weekend, live, making Onyewu the first player on a truly “big time” team from the United States (excluding keepers).

It should be fun watching Onyewu don the black and red.

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