Pondering the idea of Juventus selling Mirko Vucinic

Paolo Bruno

Rumors say Mirko Vucinic could be on the move before the transfer window is closed.

Beppe Marotta and Juventus know what the situation is. They have six strikers and only five of those are needed as Juve look to finish constructing their squad and try to win a third straight league title. Somebody has to go and with more than five weeks left in the summer transfer window, now it's just a matter of who's the "lucky" guy to be chosen to hand in their training gear and head out.

The latest and greatest rumor, via Football Italia:

Manchester United have stepped up their interest in Mirko Vucinic, reportedly offering £13m to Juventus.

This is not the first time they have been linked with the Montenegro international hitman, who could well leave Turin this summer.

He is increasingly pushed to the sidelines by the arrival of Carlos Tevez and Fernando Llorente, while the Bianconeri have also been unable to sell Fabio Quagliarella and Alessandro Matri.

According to the Corriere dello Sport, Manchester United are prepared to meet the €15m - approximately £13m - price-tag set by Juventus for Vucinic.

That provides us with a question: What would it take for Juventus to sell Mirko Vucinic?

It's an intriguing one — not just because Vucinic was an important piece to the puzzle last season, but also due to the fact that he's likely got the highest market value out of all the strikers who are currently rumored to be under the watchful eye of other teams. For as frustrating as he can be, for as up-and-down he can be one week to the next, Vucinic provided a level of flair and creativity that the other strikers the past two seasons haven't necessarily matched.

But now with Fernando Llorente and Carlos Tevez in the ranks, Vucinic could very well be an expandable commodity. For the first time since he's arrived at Juventus, Vucinic isn't guaranteed a starting spot. And with the way that Antonio Conte has said there's no way he's going to be changing has tactics any time soon, that is only further confirmed.

You do the math: Llorente and Tevez up front in a 3-5-2 and Mirko is on the outside looking in.

All of that leads to another question: Is Vucinic, a historically inconsistent player even when he's playing just about every game, really all that suited for a role as a super sub/part-time starter kind of role?

That's certainly up for the discussion. He's never been a relatively impactful player when he comes off the bench. There have bursts and goals here and there, but it's not exactly something that he's all that built for. And we know Conte will rotate his squad. Maybe not in the revolving door kind of fashion with Tevezand Llorente around that the striker department was last season, but with Juve competing on three fronts again, there will be some shuffling to keep things fresh. That means Vucinic will play, but to what extent it's hard to say.

Of course, all of this depends on what Man United or whatever other teams are interested bid for the 29-year-old Montenegrin. Marotta is in a position where he doesn't have to sell Vucinic if he gets a better offer for another one of Juve's other strikers. If he doesn't feel like a bid isn't sufficient enough for any of them, so be it. Decline it, move on, and Vucinic is a part of the squad for the upcoming season. But Marotta was relatively coy and elusive when asked about Vucinic at the end of last week, basically saying that competition is a good thing and all things will be considered by Conte when making a decision of who to play.

I'm not saying Juventus have to sell Vucinic, who had a bit of a dust-up with a Juve tifo during Sunday's training session. He certainly, when not going all inconsistent on us, has a lot of qualities that can help Juve wins games — it's certainly has been exactly that since he arrived from Roma two summers ago. But you have to think that for the rumored €15 million asking price that is being thrown out there, the thought has to have at least crossed Marotta's mind...right?

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