Stevan Jovetic still wants Juventus as Beppe Marotta plays his hand perfectly

Gabriele Maltinti

But Beppe's not doing anything that we know of publicly! Boo!

When Juventus signed Carlos Tevez nearly two weeks ago, it gave Beppe Marotta options. Not just because he landed the high-quality striker he had been chasing for years, but due to the fact that anything added to the striker department now could very well be seen as a luxury rather than a player filling a serious need.

That chase for Stevan Jovetic? Not necessarily mandatory anymore.

Trying to bid against another team for a striker your team desperately needs? Not necessarily mandatory anymore like he was a month or so ago, certainly not with Tevez now occupying such a large roll within the squad.

That means Jovetic, who has been a target of Marotta and his band of front office partners for the past two summers at the very least, isn't necessarily a player that Juventus needs anymore in terms of filling the "top player" void that had been so evident. But that doesn't mean he's a player that Juventus doesn't want to have wearing their jersey next season.

Fiorentina have played hardball, sticking to their guns in regards to how much the talented 23-year-old Montenegrin costs. The €30 million tag hanging from Jovetic's side has been the biggest hurdle, of course, but there's also the fact that the Viola have a team they don't want to sell their prized asset to sniffing around in hopes of striking a deal. Maybe if a fat-pocketed EPL team came along and chucked a couple of sacks of cash Fiorentina's way it'd be different, but Juventus want Jovetic — they're just not going to be in the same situation they were when the transfer season started.

I take you back to the Fernando Llorente press conference when Marotta had this to say:

"Jovetic? He was an option we went after during the summer, but due to difficult relations with Fiorentina I think at this point we are fine as we are. We're satisfied with our signings.

"Could we open up talks again? Anything could happen from now until August 31, as in the transfer market things change from one day to the next. Who knows, maybe by the end of August Fiorentina will be offering him to us for a free loan..." (via Football Italia)

Ladies and gentlemen, this is a man who has negotiated a deal or two before. The loan offer on transfer deadline day was a good touch, too. But, in the grand scheme of things, while Marotta was putting a couple of jabs in Fiorentina's direction, he was also outlining what the arrival of Tevez and Llorente has allowed him to do — be flexible.

Having Tevez in the ranks doesn't make Jovetic — who reportedly turned down Napoli late last week as he waits for Juventus to come and make Fiorentina another round of offers, be it straight cash or player exchanges-plus-money — the glaring need he definitely was a few weeks ago when the No. 10 jersey was still open for takers. That means giving in to Fiorentina's asking price isn't looming large of the Juventus camp now as it was pre-Tevez.

There's still the fact that Jovetic apparently has his eye on a move to Juventus, something that would obviously push the new-look Juventus strike force over the top. It's hard not to imagine the possibilities, isn't it? Visualizing a 4-3-3 with Tevez-Llorente-Jovetic up top is as naughty as it could be right now, It would push Juve from a sleeper team in the Champions League to a serious contender, one would think with all the other pieces on the roster already in place.

Even with that, though, Juventus are, as Marotta said, quite the finished product right now when it comes to strikers. Whether that was just another one of his tactics to try and make Fiorentina budge or not, that remains to be seen. But he's got leverage now, something he didn't have and Fiorentina could use against him before Tevez was signed.

Marotta is just doing what any good director general does — letting the market play out and not drastically overpaying for a player he wants on his team. And when it comes to a player of Jovetic's quality, that isn't something he's been able to do much in the past.

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