Emanuele Giaccherini leaves Sunderland to join Napoli

Emanuele Giaccherini called time on his career with Sunderland by signing for Serie A club Napoli on a three-year contract on Saturday.

The 31-year-old winger joined the Black Cats from Juventus in July 2013 but failed to cement a first-team place at the Stadium of Light and he duly returned to Italy on a season-long loan with Bologna for the 2015-16 campaign.

His impressive performances with the northern outfit -- and subsequently with Italy at Euro 2016 -- have convinced last year's Scudetto runners-up Napoli to recruit him for a reported £2 million fee.

Giaccherini enjoyed a reasonable start to life on Wearside, scoring four league goals and setting up eight more in his debut season under Paolo Di Canio and then Gus Poyet, but a series of injuries kept him on the sidelines for most of the campaign that followed.

He would miss a month of his year on loan with Bologna through injury but recovered to hit seven goals as the Rossoblu finished 14th in the Italian top flight.

Having missed out on a place at the 2014 World Cup he made the most of his inclusion in Antonio Conte's Azzurri selection for the summer's European Championship, helping Italy reach the quarterfinals, where he was among those who managed to score a spot kick in a penalty shootout defeat to Germany.

Reports had linked Arezzo-born Giaccherini with Chelsea -- now under the supervision of Conte, his manager at Juve -- but instead ambitious Napoli have moved to bolster their own attacking options with last term's 36-goal striker Gonzalo Higuain looking increasingly likely to leave the Stadio San Paolo.

Upon his arrival in Naples, Giaccherini told Napoli's website: "I've joined a prestigious club and I'm very happy to pull on this shirt.

"I can't wait for my adventure with Napoli to begin. Playing at San Paolo will be fantastic."