Franck Ribery Announces Fiorentina Contract After Bayern Munich Free Transfer

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistAugust 21, 2019

BERLIN, GERMANY - MAY 25: Franck Ribery of FC Bayern Muenchen controls the ball during the DFB Cup final between RB Leipzig and Bayern Muenchen at Olympiastadion on May 25, 2019 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
TF-Images/Getty Images

Franck Ribery announced the next chapter of his career after officially joining Fiorentina on Wednesday:

Ribery joined the Serie A outfit after leaving Bayern Munich on a free transfer this summer. The French winger enjoyed a trophy-laden 12-year spell at the Allianz Arena, winning the UEFA Champions League in 2013.

Now 36, Ribery has signed a two-year deal after being convinced by former Bayern team-mate Luca Toni to join La Viola, per GianlucaDiMarzio.com (h/t Football Italia).

Ribery was also welcomed to the Artemio Franchi Stadium by Kevin-Prince Boateng:

The midfielder has also moved to Florence during this summer's transfer window, joining from domestic rivals Sassuolo. Ribery's is the more high-profile arrival, though, as he gives manager Vincenzo Montella a proven and consistent winner at the highest levels of the European game.

Ribery played alongside some premium talent in Munich, including Philipp Lahm, Thomas Muller and Robert Lewandowski:

He formed a deadly partnership with fellow wing wizard Arjen Robben. Their combined pace, vision and shooting power from the flanks served as the platform for Die Roten's serial success during the early part of this decade.

The purple patch reached its peak with a treble of Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and Champions League titles to cap the 2012/13 campaign. Ribery's influence has waned somewhat since with Pep Guardiola, Carlo Ancelotti and Niko Kovac succeeding Jupp Heynckes in the dugout.

Heynckes enjoyed a brief return during the 2017/18 season, but Kovac's arrival last summer became the cue for Bayern to refresh options on the wings. The process led to the emergence of Kingsley Coman and former Arsenal forward Serge Gnabry, who has already started the new season as well as he finished the last:

Ribery no longer had a place at Bayern, but he can be an invaluable asset for Fiorentina. Specifically, his experience will aid the development of 21-year-old Federico Chiesa, a rising star who is effective from the flanks.

Fiorentina will count on Ribery's presence to focus a group needing to improve on last season's disappointing 16th-place finish.

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