We all have those players that we want Juventus to sign. Some are realistic, others are basically only viable and actual options when we fire up the PlayStation4 and load FIFA15 or open up Football Manager on our laptops. That's both reality and the nature of the game. The list of players we want Juventus to sign vastly outnumbers who actually joins the club.
For me, Torino fullback Matteo Darmian is at the top of the list these days.
We're going on two or three years now where Darmian has been on one of the best fullbacks in Serie A. And with that production comes the inevitable move to a club much bigger than Torino. The reports about clubs across Europe interested in Darmian have been out there for weeks now. Bayern Munich have been linked to the 25-year-old fullback. Word surfaced toward the end of last month that Napoli are very interested in sighing Darmian for a very large sum of money.
The rumored price is a steep one — around €20 million if a report from Gianluca Di Marzio is to be believed — and would obviously be even more of a hurdle to jump over considering it would be Juventus negotiating with their cross-town rival Torino. But Juventus should pay it and not look back.
Darmian's stock is obviously as high as it can possibly be these days. The quick rise essentially began when he became a regular starter for the Italian national team last year and hasn't stopped since then. Italy has gotten a new manager, and Darmian has continued to progress.
So why should Juventus sign Darmian?
Well, why not? That's the only understandable answer I can think of. (Okay, it might be a logical move, but it's not that easy, I guess, so stick with me here.)
Darmian is as good of a realistic fullback target as Juventus can sign this summer The aforementioned transfer fee would cost a pretty penny, but let's just think of this as a long-term investment more than one that will simply improve Juventus' depth at the fullback position. For as much as we want to think Juventus are set at the fullback/wingback spot for a good amount of years going forward, that's not exactly close to being the case.
Yes, Juventus have a good group of starting fullbacks. But here's the thing — they're not very young. Patrice Evra just turned 34 years old in May. Stephan Lichtsteiner will be 32 years old at the midway point of the 2015-16 season. As you can see, there's not exactly a bunch of tread left on the tires where each player can play at the highest of levels for five or 10 years to come. (Well, maybe Lichtsteiner since he is a cyborg and embraces daily the conditioning drills at preseason training.)
Fact is, Juventus' starting fullbacks aren't getting any younger. Signing Darmian would solve that problem.
Darmian is the kind of fullback who you can see being part of the next wave of Juventus talent comes through the ranks. And, just as important as his age, he fits the bill in terms of being the versatile kind of player — regardless of being a defender, midfielder or striker — Juventus has been adding to its squad in recent years. He can play on the right side of the defense. He can play on the left side of the defense. He showed it during Italy's most recent games, starting at left back against Croatia and right back a few days later against Portugal.
He's ready to make the jump in Serie A (and Europe). I don't think there's any denying that at this point.
Essentially, you sign Darmian, you will continue to kick ass in the summer transfer market, and set the club up for the future. I don't know about all of you guys, but that sounds like a pretty good idea to me.