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Was Dani Alves one of three key Juventus signings to prepare for Paul Pogba’s departure?



In Italian football, Juventus currently stand head and shoulders above all challengers. In the last five years they have claimed all five available Serie A titles, two Italian cups and three Italian Super Cups.

Currently enjoying a sustained period of dominance domestically, they have continued to fall short in the Champions League. Juventus are widely expected to reclaim a further Serie A title, even as they prepare for life without Paul Pogba, who is set to complete a world record transfer move to Manchester United for a deal in excess of £100 million.

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Pogba would become the second big name signing to depart Juventus this season after losing Alvaro Morata to Real Madrid for £25.5 million due to a cunningly placed buy-back clause in his contract by Real Madrid.

Despite the loss of a couple of key players, manager Massimiliano Allegri has been busy in the transfer market, as he continues to strengthen the squad in preparation for another season which could see them emerge as serious contenders for the European title as well as major Italian honours.

Allegri is aiming for his third consecutive league title and the club’s sixth, but with key acquisitions already made, here are three arriving players who could help them achieve European glory.

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1) Gonzalo Higuain

After a summer of rumours linking the Argentine with big money moves to the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea, the former Real Madrid superstar arrived from Napoli for £76.5 million. With such a gargantuan price tag comes a big expectation. The pressure to deliver the goals will come naturally to last season’s top scorer, who netted an impressive 36 goals in 35 games.

In his three years at Napoli, he amassed a total of 91 goals in 146 games in all competitions. His goal-scoring may prove to be the catalyst for a successful Champions League campaign, which he will be determined to add to his domestic trophy haul listed below.

List of Honours:

3 Spanish Championships (Real Madrid)

1 Spanish Cup (Real Madrid)

1 Spanish Super Cup (Real Madrid)

1 Italian Cup (Napoli)

1 Italian Super Cup (Napoli)

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2) Dani Alves

Without question, Dani Alves has been one of the best attacking full-backs of his generation. Whether he remains so is the only real point for debate. Alves arrives on a free contract from Barcelona, after spending 13 years in Spain where he amassed 621 appearances in all competitions for Barcelona (391 games) and Sevilla (230 games)

The 33-year-old will give Juventus a wealth of experience and add to the winning mentality of an impressive squad. Having grown accustomed to winning, he is unlikely to settle for less than adding to his already impressive trophy haul. His time in Spain has been filled with success and silverware.

List of Honours:

6 Spanish Championships (Barcelona)

5 Spanish Cups (4 Barcelona, 1 Sevilla)

6 Spanish Super Cups (5 Barcelona, 1 Sevilla)

2 Uefa Cups (Sevilla)

4 Uefa Super Cups (3 Barcelona, 1 Sevilla)

3 Champions Leagues (Barcelona)

3 Fifa Club World Cup (Barcelona)

International Honours:

1 Copa America (Brazil)

2 Confederations Cups (Brazil)

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3) Miralem Pjanic

The Bosnian playmaker was bought from Roma for £27.2 million and will be expected to become a key creative element of the Juventus team. The midfielder has spent five years at Roma and is experiencing a growing reputation in the game. Pjanic’s record for Roma is impressive with 30 goals and 46 assists in 185 games in all competitions.

He will be expected to regularly unlock opposition defences with his creative vision and range of passing. With Higuain up top, Pjanic is likely to be one of the main providers and his assist tally could rise significantly.

Having previously never claimed any honours within the game so far, he will be hungry to secure domestic and European titles during his time in Turin, and with such a collection of the game’s stars around him, who would bet against it coming to fruition as early as this coming season.

Featured Image: All rights reserved by Oriol Gironès

Long suffering Leeds United fan who loves the game of football and writing about it. Fantasy Football Fiend, currently managing teams on multiple season long and daily competitions.


Juventus eye up Chelsea’s Gary Cahill as a replacement for Leonardo Bonucci – Should they let him go?




In a surprising news item, The Sun claim that Juventus could look to Chelsea to replace Leonardo Bonucci after the Italian’s move to AC Milan and may target Gary Cahill as a replacement.

The Chelsea captain is currently serving a three game suspension after his red card on the opening day, but the Italian club may be hoping that he has played his last game for the Blues. They are reportedly prepared to spend as much as £16.5 million to bring him to the Juventus Stadium.

That could be tempting for Chelsea given that Cahill is 31-years-old and undoubtedly past his best. With a number of young defenders coming through, including the likes of Kurt Zouma and Andreas Christensen, it could be tempting to cash in on Cahill and give more opportunities for them to develop.

His rash challenge against Burnley also left his team in the lurch and critics have claimed that it was symbolic of how out of depth the former Bolton man is as captain of the Premier League champions. With mounting pressure, he will need to be up to scratch when under scrutiny more than anyone.

However, Cahill was only recently appointed captain and it would send out entirely the wrong message if he was to be sold now. After a disastrous transfer window so far, it would not only be a psychological blow to lose the club captain, but would also leave Antonio Conte with less than a week to replace him.

His experience is also invaluable. Whilst the likes of Christensen may be knocking on the door of the starting line-up, he will need experienced heads like Cahill’s in and around him to help his development to reach his full potential as a Chelsea player in the years to come.

It could be tempting for Chelsea to allow Cahill to move on, and had this move have happened in June, it may well stand a chance of happening. Now with the season under way and only a matter of days away from the transfer window closing, it would be an incomprehensible decision if Chelsea do sell their captain.

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Claudio Marchisio linked to Chelsea – what would he bring?

Jake Jackman




Chelsea are likely to be active until the final days of the transfer window as they look to add quality and depth to their squad. Antonio Conte currently lacks options outside of his starting eleven and competition is needed if they are to successfully defend their title. Gazzetta dello Sport report that the Italian is interested in signing Claudio Marchisio, who he has worked closely with before.

The midfielder is understood to be unhappy at Juventus due to being a bit-part player under the current regime. Ahead of the World Cup, he wants to play regular first team football and could be prepared to force a move before the transfer window closes. The Serie A champions already have a lot of players in the position and have recently bought Blaise Matuidi, which further limit the minutes that Marchisio is likely to be given.

What would he bring to Stamford Bridge?

The Blues have been criticised for their lack of ambition and poor squad planning this summer, but those will quickly be brushed to one side if they can land Marchisio. Despite having an underwhelming 2016/17 campaign, the midfielder is still regarded as a great player and it would send a statement to the rest of the division if Chelsea manage to bring him to the Premier League.

There is already a working relationship between Marchisio and Conte, which would mean that he would be able to adapt quickly to the style at Chelsea. He understands what it requires to be successful in a team managed by his fellow Italian, while the Blues’ manager trusts the midfielder. That can’t be said about certain other players currently at Stamford Bridge.

It has already been evident that Chelsea are short in central midfield as they resorted to playing David Luiz there at the weekend. The Brazilian played well, but it underlined the squad problems that the club have. Marchisio is disciplined and capable of carrying out a specific role in the team, which appeals to Conte. He can be a creative presence from deep and offers more than Cesc Fabregas does in terms of defensive work. It would be a smart signing if the Blues can pull it off.

How likely is a deal?

Juventus have already lost two important players this summer in Dani Alves and Leonardo Bonucci. It would be a surprise if they also let Marchisio leave the club. The midfielder could force the issue, but unless Chelsea submit a huge offer, a transfer looks unlikely at this late stage of the window. Conte will want to add another central midfielder, but there are other positions that are viewed as a bigger priority.

Marchisio to Chelsea
Transfer Likelihood
The Boot Room's Verdict
This one isn’t impossible, but it would take a lot of work to get it completed before the deadline. Perhaps one for a future window.
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Could Arsenal turn to Juventus’ Daniele Rugani to add depth to their defence?




Arsenal could be set to look for further reinforcements for their defence as TransferMarketWeb claim that the club may move for Juventus centre-back Daniele Rugani.

What would Rugani bring to the Emirates?

Rugani is a strong and dominant central defender who is powerful in the air and effective with the ball at his feet. At just 23-years-old, his style is one of composure and calm and that is seen when on the ball as he looks to move the ball out from the back with short passes.

Defensively, he is strong too. Rarely beaten in aerial battles, his height at 190cm helps him to see off even the most physical of centre forwards. Like many top Italian defenders, he is not afraid of a physical battle either and his strength is another asset when he comes up against powerful strikers.

Rugani is also a great tackler. Learning from the likes of Giorgio Chiellini and the recently departed Leonardo Bonucci, he has improved that area of his game and has removed some of the more rash challenges he made as a youngster.

Is a move likely?

For Arsenal, it’s a possibility. Per Mertesacker will retire at the end of 2017/18 to take up a backroom role with the club’s academy and Rugani may represent the kind of long term successor that Arsenal are on the look out for. He shares many traits with the German but is also an improvement in terms of his passing.

Juventus are unlikely to be so keen on a deal though. Rugani was not first choice last season, making just 15 Serie A appearances, but he could step up to fill the shoes of Leonardo Bonucci after he left the club earlier this summer. Even if not, he is still seen a real prospect for the future.

Whether or not Rugani is keen on the deal is likely to depend on what offer of first team football he has in Turin. He may believe that he has a shot at making Italy’s World Cup squad having been on the fringes of the squad of late. Having made only three friendly appearances and having been left out of the most recent squad, that could prove crucial.


Daniele Rugani to Arsenal
Reader Rating1 Vote3.1
Transfer Likelihood
The Boot Room's Verdict
Arsenal may well be interested in Rugani, but Juventus will not want to sell. It seems unlikely that the Gunners will fork out the kind of fee required to take him away from Turin.
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