Simply by nature, Juventus’ defense had to get younger this summer. Andrea Barzagli has retired, Martin Caceres was just a short-term option and because of that, Fabio Paratici was likely going to bring in a pair of central defenders at the very least.
Cristian Romero has been one of the first names linked to Juventus once the cycle of summer transfer rumors started (all the way back in January). And the general line in thinking is that he’s going to be a Juventus player at some point in the relatively near future.
Goal’s Romeo Agresti is reporting Tuesday morning that Juventus and Genoa are down to the final details when it comes to the rather-expected deal for Romero. Agresti notes that, with the original transfer fee for Romero — which isn’t given — and then bonuses on top of that, the deal could very well be around €20 million, if not more that that.
The catch in all of this is that Romero, who turned 21 years old in late-April, won’t be joining Juventus come the start of next season. Instead, just as he did this past season, Romero will be playing for Genoa during the 2019-20 campaign, one where he will obviously get more playing time at the Marassi than he would in Turin.
The thinking in allowing Romero to get another season of consistent playing time at Genoa is the fact that another one of Juventus’ young central defender transfer targets, Sassuolo’s Merih Demiral, is a lot more ready for first team football at Juventus, according to Agresti.
And while neither Romero nor Demiral have loads of Serie A experience to their names — the former signing with Genoa last summer, the latter only arriving in Italy in January — having both players around might as well seem a little counterintuitive seeing as they will likely be part-time starters at best if things go right next season.
So if Juve are willing to invest the kind of money in Romero that Agresti points out in his report Tuesday, then the club needs to take whatever measure they can to ensure that the young Argentine can grow into that potential that a lot of people feel he has. So maybe another year at Genoa wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world — especially if he comes back to Juventus this time next year with another 30-something starts under his belt and a whole lot of learning done.