When Juventus played Paris Saint-Germain in the United States a couple of weeks ago, Blaise Matuidi was on the field. He wasn’t in black and white stripes, rather a very vibrant shade of yellow as PSG let their new away kit loose for their first time in the 2017-18 campaign. Rumors surrounding Matuidi’s future destination potentially being Turin have gone back to the days when Paul Pogba was still a Juventus player. They returned this summer, with his name becoming more and more of a realistic target as this summer’s transfer window went on.
That dates back to June and July.
Now, as the second half August arrives, so is Matuidi.
Juventus has found its desired central midfielder to cap a busy summer of acquisitions, as the club announced Matuidi’s arrival with a press release on Friday afternoon. The 30-year-old Frenchman, who has spent the past six season at Paris Saint-Germain, has signed a three-year contract and cost the six-time Italian champions a transfer fee of €20 million with another more in performance-related bonuses potentially being added on to the final price tag.
The official announcement, courtesy of Juventus’ website:
Turin, 18 August 2017 - Juventus Football Club S.p.A. announces that the agreement with SASP Paris Saint- Germain Football for the definitive acquisition of the registration rights of the player Blaise Matuidi has been finalized for a consideration of € 20 million payable in 3 financial years.
The purchase value may increase by a further maximum of € 10,5 million on the number of player’s appearances in Juventus official matches in the next three seasons.
Juventus and the player have signed a 3-year contract of employment until 30 June 2020.
UFFICIALE - @MATUIDIBlaise è Bianconero ⚪️⚫️ https://t.co/0OmrJVmP1s#BienvenueBlaise pic.twitter.com/aDbsNtmBpj— JuventusFC (@juventusfc) August 18, 2017
We’ve seen a lot of names arrive this summer. We’ve seen nearly as many depart. We’ve seen Juventus sign wingers, we’ve seen Juventus sign a replacement for Dani Alves. We’ve seen Juve trim some of the fat and allow Mario Lemina and Tomas Rincon head toward the exit door. Now, we’ve seen them add a midfielder that arrives relatively highly-rated by those who follow this game.
Matuidi might not be the completely dynamic world-class midfielder that a lot of Juventini were hoping for this transfer window. He isn’t like his former teammate and longtime Juventus fanboy Marco Verratti. But we know that already. Matuidi will add some energy, add some steel and add some cover in front of a Juventus defense that hasn’t looked all that great during their handful of preseason games to date.
Maybe this is the last big-ish move Juventus makes this summer. Maybe Beppe Marotta has one more trick up his sleeve and we’ll be singing his praises once more before the current transfer window comes to an end. But to get Matuidi for €20-something million compared to what other players at his position are going for right now, it could be a lot worse. And now it’s up to Max Allegri to plug the new piece into the puzzle and let him work.