Sport

Family proof of Del Piero's commitment

ITALIAN superstar Alessandro Del Piero has revealed he was able to bribe his four-year-old son to come to Australia to live by promising to take him to the zoo to see kangaroos.

The new Sydney FC signing fronted his first press conference yesterday, saying he was ready to embrace the expectation of the club's fans.

"I know there is a lot of expectation ... I love that," he said. "I played 19 years with Juventus and Juventus loved to win every match. Unfortunately that didn't always happen, but I always play to win ... that's why I'm here."

As well as lifting Sydney FC, the expectation is also on the man recently voted Italy's most popular sportsperson (MotoGP rider Valentino Rossi was a distant second), to take the profile of football in Australia to another level.

The 37-year-old, who played in the all-conquering Juventus side in last season's Serie A competition in Italy, said he hoped that would happen.

"I follow every sport," he said. I saw the World Cup in 2011, the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand. It was a great moment for the sport ... I hope it will be the same for soccer here."

Del Piero also admitted some of his friends had questioned his decision to choose Australia over other options including clubs in the EPL.

"Most of my friends say, 'okay, you want a change, but there are a lot of places closer than Australia'," he said. "But I have chosen the best place I can for this moment."

To silence any doubters about the move, reportedly worth $4 million over two years, he said the fact his family had come with him, at the first opportunity, was proof of his commitment to "the project".

"I had to promise something to my son ... he is only four-years-old. I have to say 'we'll go to the special zoo where there are kangaroos'," Del Piero said. "He said 'okay, I'm happy'."

Topics:  a-league football sydney fc



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