The transfer market is in full effect. Clubs are signing and selling, rumors are swirling. Kicking off our In or Out series will be the Italian champions Juventus. In this series, we will analyze players being linked away from the club and players being rumored to be joining.
Alex Sandro: The Brazilian fullback is coming off a remarkable season and is a vital piece for Juventus. Naturally, when you have a season as great as the one Alex Sandro did, you are going to catch the eyes of other big clubs. The team showing the most interest in Alex Sandro is Chelsea. Just how serious are they? €65 million serious. Juventus have stated they do not intend on selling any of their key players, unless the player expresses their desire to leave. It is no secret that Dani Alves will leave this summer, so Juventus may not be inclined to want to lose another one of their fullbacks. Juventus do not need the money, but €65 million is a lot of money for a fullback. Final verdict: Alex Sandro is out and will leave Juventus and join Chelsea
Leonardo Bonucci: The Italian defender was such a coveted player last summer, coming off his great Euro campaign. Chelsea and Manchester City were willing to spend north of €50 million to bring Bonucci to England. Bonucci did not want to leave and wanted to help Juventus conquer the Champions League. This season had some ups and downs for Bonucci: Allegri benched him in the 2nd leg of their Champions League matchup against Porto, the rumors about a fallout after the UCL final in Cardiff. While Bonucci is not being aggressively pursued like he was last summer, he is being linked to Chelsea and Manchester City again. Juventus have to begin planning for life after Bonucci, Barzagli, and Chiellini, who are not getting any younger. The only options Allegri currently has off the bench are Benatia and Rugani. Hard to imagine Juventus selling Bonucci, given the decline in Barzagli’s appearances and lack of depth. Final verdict: Juventus keeps hold of Bonucci for another season. When Caldara joins the club in another year, it could open the door for a possible Bonucci exit.
Douglas Costa: The 26-year old Brazilian winger has been linked to Juventus for some time now. At various times this summer, there were rumors that a deal was essentially done and conflicting reports that say it is not close to being done. With the imminent departure of Dani Alves, Douglas Costa could be slotted in as a wing-back, when Allegri plays with a 3-5-2 formation. Costa can be a very frustrating player, one that can absolutely wow you and then have extended periods of poor play. Bayern Munich are reportedly asking for €40 million-€50 million for Douglas Costa, who would require a non-EU slot, which could cause hesitation from Juventus, as they evaluate their mercato plans. Final verdict: Douglas Costa is out, Juventus will not sign him, as they rather use the non-EU slot on a fullback (i.e. Danilo).
Federico Bernardeschi: Fiorentina’s young talent is a highly coveted commodity this summer. The Italian international is being linked to Juventus, Inter, and several clubs abroad. We all know about the bad blood and relationship between Juventus and Fiorentina. La Viola essentially refuses to sell their players to Juventus. That bad blood does not bode well for Juventus and up until now, Bernardeschi has not told Fiorentina that he only wants to join the Bianconeri. Fiorentina wants at least €40 million for their talent and if Juventus are the only club to offer a figure like that, it could help their case. News recently broke that the Della Valle family are willing to sell Fiorentina, which remains to be seen how that affects Bernardeschi’s immediate future. Final verdict: Bernardeschi will not join Juventus.
Keita: It is no secret, Keita wants to sign with Juventus and only Juventus. Keita had a real break out season at Lazio, in which he scored 16 goals. Keita is young (22 years old), knows Italy and Serie A well, and is talented; a player profile that appeals a lot to Juventus. His contract expires next summer and Lazio do risk losing Keita for nothing if they do not sell him this summer or in the winter. Lazio’s president, Claudio Lotito, is a real tough negotiator and refuses to budge on his demands. Lotito does not appear willing to sell Keita to Juventus, he would reportedly sell him to Milan, another club interested in the winger. Juventus could just wait another year and sign Keita on a free transfer, something the club has a knack for. Final verdict: Lotito will not sell Keita to Juventus this summer. Assuming Keita is not sold to another club, Keita will sign with Juventus on a free transfer next year.
Danilo: The Real Madrid player appears to be the candidate Juventus are pursuing the most to bolster their fullback position. With Dani Alves on his way out and Alex Sandro possibly heading to Chelsea, there will be a need for a fullback. Danilo is in a rotation with Marcelo and Carvajal at Real Madrid, should he join Juventus, he will likely be more of a consistent starter. Juventus could sell Alex Sandro to Chelsea for €65 million and replace him with Danilo for a price far less than that. Juventus only have one non-EU slot left to use this summer, so they may have to choose and prioritize between Danilo and Douglas Costa. Final verdict: Juventus will sign Danilo this summer as a replacement for Dani Alves.