Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri was swamped with questions about potential transfers in his post-match conference after losing to hosts Melbourne Victory. The Italian champions are in Australia to kick off their pre-season schedule playing in the International Champions Cup.
At around the halftime mark of the game, news broke back in Italy that Gonzalo Higuain had not only completed a medical administered by Juventus officials (in Madrid, of all places), but had already signed a five-year contract with the Bianconeri. If that is true, then all that is left to complete this transaction is Juve paying Napoli the release clause amount, a whopping €94 million.
As can be expected, the post-match press conference turned into a melee with all the media interested more in the transfer activities than the game itself.
On Higuain -
"I don't talk about transfer news. The only thing I can talk about tonight is the game."
On Pogba -
"As I said before, I'm not going to talk about transfer news.
"We just had a game. I'm not sure what's happened in the transfer market during the last few days, so once again I prefer to have questions regarding the game."
On the game -
"It was a decent workout for us. I'm happy with how our youngsters performed this evening."
This is all really interesting because if Juventus can hold on to Paul Pogba despite mounting pressure from Manchester United (and what feels like the world’s media), that will give the Turin side a world-beating squad the likes of which they have not seen in easily over a decade.
As for the game itself, there was really little to be said about it. Fielding a squad heavily reliant on youngsters, the Bianconeri took the lead early in the second half through a sensational strike by defender Carlos Blanco. The Aussies pulled a goal back late, before winning the resulting penalty shootout 4-3 with Roman Macek and Stefano Padovan seeing their spotkicks saved.