Former Arsenal striker set to join Italian side

Gervinho is close to returning to Italy as he is linked with a move to newly-promoted side Parma.

Parma is reportedly in search for a forward in a bid to bolster its frontline and they believe Gervinho offers the experience and skill necessary. Two years ago, Gervinho left Roma to join Hebei Fortune and the Ivorian is already set to return to Europe.

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As reported by Sky Sports, the Ivorian’s deal is on the very edge of completion, with talks having accelerated in recent hours. Gervinho will be flying to Italy within the next 24-48 hours, to complete a medical and to join Parma.

A key signing for Parma, Gervinho joins new loan signing Inglese from Napoli and potentially Mattia Sprocati from Lazio. Gervinho was at Arsenal from 2011 to 2013, playing 63 games for the Gunners in all competitions – scoring 11 times.

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On 12 July 2011 Gervinho completed a transfer from Lille to Arsenal for a fee believed to be around £10.8 million. Gervinho was given the number 27 shirt, which was last worn by Ivory Coast teammate Emmanuel Eboué who was already on the verge of leaving the club. He made his debut in a pre-season friendly match against 1. FC Köln, in which he scored a brace within the first 15 minutes He was sent off on his Premier League debut against Newcastle United for slapping Joey Barton. The game finished 0–0. This resulted in a standard three-match ban for violent conduct.[24] Alan Pardew (manager of Newcastle United) accused Gervinho of diving when Cheick Tioté challenged him inside the box. He scored his first league goal in a 4–3 loss to Blackburn Rovers. On 23 October 2011 Gervinho followed this up by contributing to all three goals in Arsenal’s 3–1 win over Stoke City, scoring the first and assisting both of Robin van Persie’s goals. He then scored his third goal for Arsenal on 3 December 2011, in a 4–0 win at Wigan Athletic, scoring the third goal of the match in a comfortable victory. He scored his fourth goal of his time at Arsenal on 27 December 2011 in the 1–1 draw against Wolves. Gervinho then departed for the Africa Cup of Nations after a 2–1 defeat to Fulham. Gervinho made his return on 18 February 2012 in the FA Cup match against Sunderland which ended in a 2–0 defeat that knocked Arsenal out of the 2011–12 FA Cup.

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Gervinho played in three of the first four league games of the season and scored a double in the 6–1 home victory over Southampton on 15 September. Gervinho scored his first Champions League goal of the new season in a 2–1 victory over Ligue 1 champions HSC Montpellier on 18 September.

On 16 March, Gervinho sealed a 2–0 win at Swansea City by scoring his first goal for Arsenal since September.  On 30 March, Gervinho scored a goal and assisted two others as Arsenal beat Reading 4–1 and was named as man of the match.

On 8 August 2013, Arsenal sold Gervinho to Italian club A.S. Roma for €8 million. He made his first appearance for Roma as a substitute against Livorno on 25 August. It took until 25 September for Gervinho to score his first official goal for Roma, finishing from close range after an assist from Francesco Totti, which sealed a 2–0 defeat of Sampdoria. In the following Serie A match, he helped Roma record six straight victories to begin the season by netting two goals in their 5–0 defeat of Bologna.

In the quarter-final round of the Coppa Italia on 21 January 2014, Gervinho netted the game’s only goal with an acrobatic finish from a Kevin Strootman pass to advance past Juventus and into the semi-finals. In the first leg of their semi-final tie with Napoli on 5 February, Gervinho netted twice, including a late game-winning goal to send Roma into the second leg with a 3–2 advantage.

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On 30 August 2014, Gervinho scored in the Roma’s second goal in a 2–0 win over Fiorentina to start the 2014–15 season. He scored his first goals in European competition for Roma on 17 September 2014, netting twice in the 5–1 Champions League group stage victory over CSKA Moscow.

In January 2016, Gervinho moved to newly promoted Chinese Super League team Hebei China Fortune for a reported initial fee of €18 million.[40] On 4 March 2016, Gervinho scored on his competitive debut in a 1–2 away win against Guangzhou R&F on the opening game of the 2016 Chinese Super League.

In October 2016, Gervinho ruptured the ligaments in his left knee whilst in training for Hebei China Fortune. As a result of this, he missed the 2017 Africa Cup of Nations.

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