Cannavaro back with Juventus

ROME: Juventus announced on Tuesday the re-signing of Italy World Cup winning captain Fabio Cannavaro from Real Madrid.

Cannavaro's contract with the Spaniards runs out at the end of June and he has signed a one-year deal with the 'Old Lady' of Turin.

The 35-year-old was world player of the year in 2006, after leading Italy to World Cup glory that same year.

That was also the summer he left Juventus, where he had played for two seasons, to join Real after the Italians were relegated to Serie B for match-fixing.

His move angered many fans and when his possible return to the club was first mooted it received mixed reactions from Juve fans, some of whom have not forgiven him for deserting them in 2006.

Even so, the player is looking forward to making his return to Turin and winning over his detractors.

Speaking from the city, where he came to sign his contract, he said: "I'm delighted to have returned to Turin and to have the opportunity to wear the black and white (Juve) jersey again.

"I'm sorry that in some fans anger prevails over the appreciation for the glorious seasons we lived through together.

"I'm convinced that I can win over even the biggest skeptics through hard work, professionalism and the passion with which I will tackle this new adventure." Cannavaro won the title in both his previous seasons at Juventus but the club was stripped of those for their role in the calciopoli match-fixing scandal.

The centre-back was born in Naples and played for home-town club Napoli for three seasons before joining Parma in 1995, with whom he won the UEFA Cup and two Italian Cups over a seven year period.

He left to join Inter Milan in 2002 but after only two seasons moved on to Juve.

Upon joining Real Madrid in 2006 he helped the club win back-to-back La Liga titles.

He has been a winner both domestically and internationally as well as on a personal level and that is what convinced Juve sports director Alessio Secco to bring him back.

"Fabio is a World Cup winner, a Ballon d'Or winner and a great man in the changing rooms," he said.

"During the summer of 2006 the club had to sell him to deal with an economic crisis.

"This year we have waited out the end of Cannavaro's (Real) contract in order to bring him back to Turin and we're sure that he will make Juventus more competitive." Over his 17-year-career Cannavaro has represented his country 124 times, scoring twice.