4 Positions Juventus Must Strengthen to Win the Champions League Next Season

​Juventus had aspirations of competing on all fronts last season and no one could rule them out after they competed the sensational signing of Cristiano Ronaldo from Real Madrid. 

However, the Old Lady struggled at points last season. They were knocked out of the Champions League by a fine Ajax side and beaten by Atalanta in the Coppa Italia quarter finals. 

As a result, Juventus and Massimiliano Allegri agreed to part ways this summer as the club look to push on to the next level. Allegri won the league title five years in a row with the club, also winning the Coppa Italia in his first four years. 

Maurizio Sarri has taken over the reigns as manager, having asked Chelsea to release him from his post. Only time will tell if Sarri can have the desired impact, but the jury is still out considering he only recently won his first major trophy.

Here’s our take on the positions Juventus must strengthen in if they seek Champions League glory. 


A Replacement for Joao Cancelo 

Ricardo Pereira

​Juventus appear on the brink of selling Portuguese right back, Joao Cancelo, to Manchester City. Representatives of both clubs have met in London to discuss a proposed five-year deal, according to Tutto Mercato Web.

Consequently, I Bianconeri are on the hunt for a replacement. ​The Sun have reported that they are closing in on a deal for Leicester City’s right back, Ricardo Pereira. The 25-year-old had a standout season at the King Power Stadium, where he won the Player of the Year award. 

Juve only have Mattia De Sciglio to cover if Cancelo completes his move, making the signing of Pereira of even greater importance. The player is keen on a move and if the club have their eyes on the Champions League prize, he would be critical with his ability to do his defensive duties as well as get forward. 


A New World Class Centre-Back

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The formidable partnership of Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci is one that will live long in the memory of Juve fans, but the club now need a young world class defender to carry the baton on.

Enter, Matthijs de Ligt.

The 19-year-old Dutch defender has been touted as one of the hottest prospects around and rightly so. There has been much, much speculation surrounding his future but it appears that the Turin side ​have ​won the battle for his signature. 

He will earn around €12m per season, after tax. This is more than what some of the old guard earn, including the likes of Chiellini, which just goes to show just how important Juventus believe he is. The defender will also learn a great deal from those around him and that is a scary thought for the rest of Europe. 


Pog-back…Back?

Paul Pogba,Sami Khedira

The ​Paul Pogba saga continues as he looks to force his way out of ​Manchester United. The latest twist in the tale is that the Frenchman has told his former teammates that he wants to return to the club, as reported by the ​Mirror, sourcing ‘reports in Italy.’ 

Pogba apparently proclaimed this while attending Andrea Barzagli’s birthday party last month. The Juve midfield needs a complete overhaul as proven last season and the World Cup winner would go a long way to solving the issue. 

Pogba would suit Cristiano Ronaldo’s style of play as he can see the constant runs that the Portuguese star makes. As well as this, if he can strike up a good relationship with his fellow compatriot, Adrien Rabiot, there are few defences in Europe that would be able to stop them. 


Replacement for Mario Mandzukic

Mauro Emanuel Icardi

​Gazzetta dello Sport have reported that Mauro Icardi would be more than happy to quit Inter and move to Juventus. The Argentine had a season to forget as he was stripped of the captaincy. However, I Bianconeri appear to be the club most interested in him and it could be a very plausible deal as Inter seem reluctant to welcome him back for the new season. 

Juventus need a long-term replacement for the ageing Mario Mandzukic, and the 26-year-old could be just the right man. He managed only 11 league goals last season but in the 2017/18 season, he scored 29 goals in 34 appearances, and 24 the season prior. 

The stumbling block surrounding a deal is the future of Gonzalo Higuain. The club see the Argentinian’s future elsewhere. It is ​reported that the club will look to exchange him for teenage sensation, Nicolo Zaniolo. 

There is still a long way to go before I Bianconeri conclude a deal for Zaniolo however, the belief is that if the club can offload Higuain, it would free space and money to pursue Mauro Icardi. Both players would bring a cutting edge to their attack and most certainly place them in contention for the Champions League. 


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Adrien Rabiot Arrives at Juventus Ahead of Free Transfer From Paris Saint-Germain

​Adrien Rabiot has arrived in Italy ahead of signing a five-year deal with Juventus.

Rabiot’s contract at Paris Saint-Germain is set to expire at the end of June after both parties failed to negotiation an extension. The midfielder fell out of favour with the French champions and failed to make a single appearance during the second half of the 2018/19 season, being relegated to the reserves by PSG boss Thomas Tuchel.

It was recently reported that ​Juventus had agreed personal terms with Rabiot and it now appears that the move has been set into motion.

Juventus have now posted a video on their official ​twitter account to confirm that Rabiot is in Italy to complete the move, filming the French midfielder shortly after he landed in Turin, presumably heading off to the club’s training centre.

Juventus also teased his arrival by posting a cryptic tweet earlier on in the day, which simply was captioned ‘ignite out tomorrow’ – promising big news on July 1.

​Goal have reported that Rabiot is set to carry out his medical on Monday, before he signs a five-year deal with I Bianconeri.

The deal would see Rabiot net £6m per season and his mother Veronique, who acts as his agent, will pocket £9m as a fee for overseeing the transfer.

Rabiot becomes the latest in a long line of free transfers who have arrived at Juventus in recent years, with the latest being Aaron Ramsey, who will join up with the club this summer after previously negotiating his exit from Arsenal earlier in the year.

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Luca Pellegrini Arrives for Juventus Medical Ahead of Leonardo Spinazzola Swap Deal

​Juventus have confirmed that Roma defender Luca Pellegrini has arrived for his medical with the club, ahead of a swap deal which will see Leonardo Spinazzola move in the opposite direction.

Spinazzola underwent a ​medical with Roma on Saturday, after the two clubs agreed to exchange players to help with their respective ambitions for next season.


​Juventus took to ​Twitter to confirm Pellegrini’s medical, which is expected to be the final step before this deal can be officially completed.

The 20-year-old is set to take Spinazzola’s place as backup to ​Alex Sandro, although he will certainly be pushing for game time under new boss Maurizio Sarri after establishing himself as one of the ​Serie A’s most exciting left-backs.

After struggling to force his way into Roma’s plans last season, Pellegrini was shipped out on loan to Cagliari for the second half of the campaign. He made 12 appearances in all competitions and even managed to grab an assist, in what was an impressive period for the defender.


He has also operated further up the field, either as a left winger or a central midfielder, and this versatility is thought to be incredibly appealing for Juventus, who could use him as a backup in a number of positions.

The Bianconeri are eager to sign exciting young players, whilst Roma are looking for established seniors who can help them in their push for ​Champions League qualification, so this deal is beneficial for everyone involved.

Should he pass his medical, Pellegrini is expected to sign a five-year contract in Turin, committing his long-term future to the Serie A champions.

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Ed Woodward Sets Paul Pogba Asking Price as Midfielder ‘Begs’ Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to Let Him Leave

​Manchester United chief executive is reported to have set a £120m price tag on the head of Paul Pogba, whose exit from the club this summer seems more likely by the day, amid interest from Juventus and Real Madrid. 

The midfielder returned to the club from the Old Lady back in 2016, but his second spell at Old Trafford has stuttered due to a combination of form and controversy – most notably his public falling out with Jose Mourinho at the beginning of last season. 

In total, he has scored or assisted 60 goals in 135 appearances since making his comeback, but if the multitude of reports that have arisen in recent weeks are to be believed, then there is a strong possibility he has played his last game for the Red Devils. ​The Sun are the latest, leading with a headline about how Pogba will ‘beg’ manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to let him leave, despite Woodward’s reluctance to sell. 

Ed Woodward

While perhaps a tad dramatic with the word choice, it seems to corroborate previous reports that the 26-year-old is set for ​crunch talks with Solskjaer over his future, during which he would ‘reiterate his desire’ to leave the club. 

The most interesting detail of the Sun’s report, however, is buried towards the end, as it notes that Woodward wants £120m for his signature – a price tag seemingly designed to ward off any potential suitors. 

It is believed that Real Madrid won’t go higher than £90m, though could use a player to bridge the gap, while it is difficult to see Juventus going that high given their current financial situation, and the money they still have tied up in the Cristiano Ronaldo deal from a year ago. 

Paul Pogba

If someone was to come in with that sort of fee, it would represent a sizeable profit on the £95m United paid for him three years ago, and give Solskjaer a major financial boost to aid in his squad overhaul.

Having just secured their second signing in the summer ​in the form of Aaron Wan-Bissaka, ​United are reported to be chasing deals for Bruno Fernandes, Harry Maguire and Declan Rice among others, so the extra cash to fund further additions would be welcome.

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Transfer Rumours: Rakitic to Man Utd, PSG Contact Bonucci, Kylian Mbappe to Refuse New Deal & More

​It’s rumour o’clock, everybody.

On today’s edition of the rumour mill, we’ve got Manchester United apparently ditching their promising transfer policy, Paris Saint-Germain looking beyond Matthijs de Ligt and Wolves selling rather than buying a Portuguese player.

Let’s get stuck in, shall we?


Manchester United Keeping Tabs on Ivan Rakitic

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​Manchester United have enjoyed a promising transfer window so far, securing deals for young, prodigious talents Daniel James and Aaron Wan-Bissaka. So, how do they follow that up? Do what they usually do and pursue an ageing midfielder who is practically destined to underwhelm at Old Trafford.

That’s a little unfair, as Rakitic is still a very tidy player, but it wouldn’t exactly make much sense for United to go in pursuit of the 31-year-old. Even still, ​Sport are reporting that United are preparing for the potential departure of Paul Pogba and have lined up Rakitic as an option to replace him.

United have offered €35m, but ​Barcelona are not willing to part ways with the Croatian for anything less than €50m. 


​Liverpool Target Junior Firpo Provides Update on Future

Houssem Aouar,Junior Firpo

​Liverpool supporters would have understandably breathed a sigh of relief when Alberto Moreno was released earlier this summer, but his departure does leave a gap in the squad that needs filling.

The Reds have been linked with a move for Real Betis left-back Junior Firpo, who is currently on international duty with Spain’s under-21s at the European Championships, and the 22-year-old recently discussed what lies ahead for him.

“The market? I don’t think about it, as I’ve said many times before, we’re playing for a very important trophy.” he said (via ​The Echo). I also like to experience other countries, but first I want to think about finishing the European Championship.” 

Not much to go on, but it’s something for the Reds to cling on to. Even though they’re definitely not blowing £40m odd on a back up left back.


Paris Saint-Germain Turn Attention to Leonardo Bonucci

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Leonardo Bonucci returned to ​Juventus with his tail between his legs last year following a miserable excursion to Milan, and it looks like he could be on the move once again this summer – that’s if Paris Saint-Germain have anything to say about it anyway.

According to ​Goal, PSG, fresh from their failed pursuit of Matthijs de Ligt, have contacted Bonucci’s representatives to ascertain whether or not they would be able to negotiate a deal for the 32-year-old.

Juventus and PSG have been dealing with each other pretty frequently of late, so don’t be surprised if this rumour starts to take off over the coming days.


Leeds to Wrap Up Signing of Helder Costa

Helder Costa

​It was a mixed-bag for ​Wolves’ forwards during 2018/19. While Raul Jimenez and Diogo Jota flourished, the likes of Helder Costa and Adama Traore floundered, and it now appears that the former is on his way out of Molineux.

​John Percy of the Telegraph has reported that Wolves have agreed to loan the Portuguese winger to ​Leeds for the season and the deal should be finalised next week. He’s already said his goodbyes to his teammates – at least for the year, that is.

All that’s left to do for Wolves is to find another Portguese winger to replace him.


Kylian Mbappe Refuses to Commit Long-Term Future to PSG

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​Real Madrid have been on the warpath so far this summer and they don’t look to be finished just yet – although securing a deal for PSG superstar Kylian Mbappe seems a little unlikely for now at least.

But fear not Real supporters. ​Marca are reporting that Mbappe does not intend on renewing his current deal with PSG – which expires in 2022 – which means they may need to consider selling him next year to avoid letting him leave for a discounted price.

That’s music to the ears of Real, who will no doubt be going all out to secure a big-money move for Mbappe next year.


Che Adams Bids Farewell to Birmingham Following Improved Southampton Bid

Che Adams

​Southampton struggled for goals in 2018/19, as none of their players were able to hit double figures in the Premier League. Nathan Redmond finished as their top scorer, which is a little concerning when he’s not even a striker.

The Saints have turned to ​Birmingham’s Che Adams to help solve their woes in front of goal and, according to the ​Daily Mail, the Blues are now willing to let their star striker go after the Saints came in with a £16m bid.

The 22-year-old has no prior top flight experience, but he managed to plunder 22 goals in the Championship last season, so he’ll be expected to step up to the mark.

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