This time last week, we were hearing that Juventus and Genoa had agreed to a deal for highly-rated teenage midfielder Rolando Mandragora, who is spending the current season on loan at Pescara. We didn't know much else than that mainly because of the fact that Juve and the player had yet to agree to personal terms before New Year's Eve arrived.
Well, that aforementioned Step 2 in the process — getting closer to being done as well.
According to Sky Sports Italia and Gianluca Di Marzio, Juventus and the 18-year-old Mandragora are close to agreeing to a deal that would see the youngster sign a five-year contract with the four-time defending Italian champions. In the same report by Sky, Juventus fended off competition from both Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain to sign Mandragora, who made his debut against Juve last season.
It is believed the transfer fee to sign Mandragora will be anywhere from €5 million to €7 million with bonuses likely included somewhere in there because there always seems to be.
Logic and history of deals like this with Genoa — mainly the one done for Stefano Sturaro a year and a half ago — means that Mandragora will probably spend the rest of the season at Pescara, which is currently in fourth place in Serie B. With Mandragora playing regularly there, it wouldn't make much sense to sign him and then have him sit on the bench for the next six months in the second half of the 2015-16 season. Like I said, having a youngster signed and then leaving him right where he currently is, that's a model Juve's used effectively before — especially one that is so highly rated like Mandragora is.