5) David Beckham
Beckham first went to Milan while on loan from LA Galaxy, and it was big news around Europe. He said that his decision was based on the desire to play for England in the upcoming World Cup qualifying matches.
He was first introduced in the training facilities by the chief executive, on 20 December 2008. He wore number 32 on his back, as his usual number 7 shirt was already taken, as was another shirt number he wore, 23. Beckham was welcomed with a warm greeting to the club, and was cleared in his physical. As usual in his career, he was always in great shape, and in fact, the club doctor made the comment that he assumed Beckham could play for another 5 years, which would have made him 38 at the end of his career.
4) Trevor Francis
In the summer of 1982, he made the move to Italy. At the time, he was 28 and one of the most respected strikers in the world, not just in England. His move to Sampdoria was big news, and Capello nominated him as the most successful Englishman to move to Serie A. Francis scored 17 goals and made 68 appearances for the club.
During the 1984-85 season, the team made a challenge for the title, but they were unsuccessful. However, they did beat Napoli and won the Coppa Italia. After that season, Francis was not played much and eventually moved to Atalanta. He was unable to bring back his form and moved back to England in 1987.
3) Paul Ince
Ince made an impact in Italy, much against what was expected. He was playing for England at the same time as the more talented Paul Gascoigne, but he played a major role in midfield, breaking up play for the team, which let Gascoigne be more creative. The club liked Ince’s style of play, especially how determined and hard working he was. There were reports that the club president wanted Ince to stay, but he eventfully only managed two seasons for the club. He did have a great debut season for the club, and was close to winning a medal in the following seasons, as Inter lost in the final of the UEFA cup to Schalke.
2) David Platt
Platt was one of the most successful ever players to move to Italy. He is known as being there throughout the 1990’s, after his success during the Italia ’90 World Cup. He first went to Bari, and then Juventus, who he won the UEFA Cup with. However, most people remember him with the Sampdoria shirt on.
Initially, he moved down a division when Bari were relegated, but his classic attacking midfielder style got him a transfer to Juventus. He was unsuccessful in Tuin, and the coach was not too keen on him. His move to Sampdoria made him a fan favorite and he won the title with them in 1994.
1) Paul Gascoigne
He joined Lazio for a fee of £5.5 million, and made £22,000 a week, which was staggering at the time. It was on 27 September 1992 when he made his debut, a match that was shown in Britain at the time (it was against Genoa).
He did not find it easy to settle in Italy, and took on a lot of negative comments from the local press. There were also occasions when he made the situation worse by punching reporters. In another well known incident, he belched down a microphone. These things were not liked at all in Italy and made his time there difficult.
The fans of the club loved him, but the owner was not too excited about him joining, making some famous comments at the time. His form was not great during the first seasons, and he was troubled by an injury which had kept him out of football during the previous season. He became popular with the fans during the Rome derby, when he scored in the final minute of the game, against A.S. Roma.