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Trying to understand the logic behind Juventus' interest in Roberto Pereyra

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Giuseppe Bellini

There is still one more week separating us between the present day and the beginning of the transfer window. Sure, Paris Saint-German are dropping cash on players like its pocket change in a small fountain, but the real fun hasn't really started yet. And who knows, it might start until the World Cup gets over and done with.

But that doesn't mean names won't be thrown out there. And when it comes to the names being associated with a potential move to Turin, none of them are all that surprising.

Alexis Sánchez is one. Didier Drogba is another. Same with Antonio Candreva and Alvaro Morata. Another name people are mentioning with a move to Juventus? Udinese attacking midfielder Roberto Pereyra.

"Pereyra is a target of Juventus," Udinese sporting director Cristiano Giaretta said to Sky Italia. "There is a legitimate interest from them and we have an open dialogue wth Juve.

"We expect a good ending."

(Source: Fox Soccer)

So, no need to call this a "rumored" move anymore. When a high-ranking Udinese official like, say, a sporting director comes and says Pereyra is a target of Juventus, then I believe he is a target of Juventus.

But why?

While there might not be any truth to the rumor that Beppe Marotta is required to buy at least one player from Udinese during every summer transfer window, it definitely looks that way. Simone Pepe, Kwadwo Asamoah, Mauricio Isla. The list goes on and on and on. And if Pereyra becomes the latest player to trade in his Udinese black and white stripes for those of Juventus, then Juve will continue the trend of balancing Udinese's books.

Pereyra fits the bill in this kind of way — he's versatile, the kind of midfielder Antonio Conte likes to have at his disposal. Much in the same fashion as somebody like Candreva, Pereyra — who turn 24 years old this summer — has the ability to play a whole lotta positions on the field. Don't believe me, check out his WhoScored page. Yeah, that's six different positions where he lined up this season, according to the good folks over at WhoScored.

That versatility could be the exact thing that Conte and the Juve management attempting to sign Pereyra. That could be especially true if all the talk of Conte potentially wanting more tactical flexibility next season ends up being the case. If it's players who have the ability to play out wide as well as the ability to play in the middle of the park, then Pereyra fits the bill.

However...

If Juventus see Pereyra as somebody who will play more centrally, then there's plenty of competition for playing time. And if this rumored price of around €15 million is anything to take seriously, then a potential fourth- or fifth-choice midfielder is a little more — or a lot more — than the club should shelling out.

Who knows, though. Considering how he is able to play a number of positions, I doubt that Conte would stick him in one spot where things are already crowded and just leave him there. And all this "summit" chatter likely won't be the last of the Pereyra-to-Juventus talk. But of all the rumored and talked about targets that are being thrown out there right now, Pereyra coming to Turin seems like one of the few that actually seems somewhat close to actually happening.