When Juventus sold Carlos Tevez back to Boca Juniors, Rodrigo Bentancur was one of what seemed like 15 different players that the Italian champions had the option to sign in the future. He wasn’t even the first player from Boca to arrive in Turin to try and show his worth. (That belonged to Guido Vadala, just to refresh your memory.)
But, in his two years in Turin, Bentancur has shown to be the best of the bunch, a worthy inclusion in the deal for one of Juventus’ better buys during this Scudetto run.
And now the young Uruguayan is being rewarded for it in a big way.
On Saturday, Juventus announced what we have been expecting for a couple of weeks now — a contract extension that ties Bentancur to the club for the long term. Bentancur has officially signed a contract extension through the 2023-24 season, with the 21-year-old midfielder — he turns 22 years old next week — expected to get a nice little raise to a reported salary of €2.5 million a season after being one of the senior teams lowest-paid players the past two years.
Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.
As one of the head officers of the Bentancur Hive, I approve of this move 10 fold.
Bentancur, currently on international duty with Uruguay at the Copa America, had this to say upon signing his contract extension (assumingly before he left for Brazil):
“It’s an incredible emotion, I am very happy to renew for another two years. I want to make the most of this opportunity, improve as much as possible and bring many titles to this club.
“It’s an incredible club. They told me when I arrived that Juve was a family and they prove this to be the truth every year. They are one of the best three clubs in Europe and it is an honour to stay here for another five years.
“The goal is to win everything next year with this club and win the World Cup with Uruguay.”
In his two seasons at Juventus, Bentancur has seen his role increase from full-time reserve to being thrust into a starting spot based both on injuries and some very good early-season form to start the 2018-19 campaign. As opposed to appearing in just 20 games — and just five of those being starts — in Serie A in his first season in Turin, Bentancur saw that number increase to 21 Serie A starts and 31 total appearances last year.
While there were some inconsistent and frustrating moments, Bentancur has proven to be a player that Juventus can only continue to give a bigger role to as time goes on — especially with a lot of the club’s other midfielders either already over the age of 30 or approaching relatively soon.