With Gianluigi Buffon deciding to leave Juventus for a second time and subsequently heading back to where it all started at Parma, the club is in need of a new backup goalkeeper to deputize behind Wojciech Szczesny. And while it’s not the most pressing transfer need as compared to other areas of the field, it’s a hole that new Chief Football Officer Federico Cherubini will have to fill sooner rather than later.
And as we get ready to hit the middle of July, there have certainly been a whole lot of names linked to the backup goalkeeper position at Juventus over the last few weeks. So, let me just list the names that have been linked with Juventus:
- Mattia Perin
- Antonio Mirante
- Salvatore Sirigu
- Sergio Romero (no, not that one)
- Emil Audero
- David Ospina
The two most unlikely names to be Szczesny’s backup seem to be Perin and Audero, but for two very different kinds of reasons.
Perin, who spent last season on loan at Genoa and is back with Juventus, is believed to still very much want regular playing time which obviously wouldn’t happen in Turin with Szczesny fully entrenched as the starter. Secondly, it has been reported over the last few weeks that Juventus would prefer to sell him rather than loan him out again if the opportunity presents itself. Audero, who has been just a solid starting goalkeeper for Sampdoria the last couple of years despite his young age, would certainly be the most expensive keeper of the bunch listed above. And with the way Juventus’ transfer spending this summer will likely be impacted by the pandemic, spending a nice chunk of money for a backup goalkeeper doesn’t seem likely — at all.
This basically means that of those four other goalkeepers who have been linked with Juventus, there’s is one common thread: they are all in their 30s, they are all experienced and they have all played in Serie A in recent years or were on a roster in Italy last season.
Of those four names, Sirigu and Mirante have been the most consistently linked with Juventus. Mirante is currently a free agent after his contract with Roma expired at the end of June. Sirigu is still under contract with Torino and just spent the past month as Gianluigi Donnarumma’s backup at Euro 2020, but has been described as “not happy” on the Granata side of Turin by Torino President Urbino Cairo. Sirigu is said to be evaluating the possibility of joining Juventus as a backup or if he still wants to seek a starting keeper job.