With the Euro 2020 madness now a thing of the past — although you know parts of Italy are most definitely still parting — the attention has quickly turned to what Juventus’ roster is going to look like come the start of the 2021-22 season. And, as we know, as much as there’s interest in players who might be leaving, there’s also some potential dominoes that a lot of us would like to see fall in the next week or two.
Thing is, there’s still negotiations to be had.
And those are ... maybe not progressing the way we would like them to at the moment.
According to Sky Sport Italia’s Gianluca Di Marzio, Juventus and Sassuolo’s meeting on Friday didn’t exactly go as well as many of us hoped. Juventus, according to Di Marzio, put forward a new €30 million offer that is built the same way as last summer’s Federico Chiesa deal with Fiorentina to try and bring Manuel Locatelli to Turin. This, of course, is much lower than the €40 million asking price that Sassuolo has had all along as well as the €40 million offer Arsenal submitted earlier this month.
And that might not be a surprise seeing as we got reports nearly three weeks ago that Sassuolo was not interested in a Chiesa-like deal for Locatelli.
From Di Marzio’s report:
Today, another meeting took place between the bianconeri directors and Sassuolo. Juve has made its first offer for the player, but they have received a negative response from the other party, more for the offer than for the formula.
The bianconeri offer did not exceed 30 million euros, between a loan and obligation to purchase, meanwhile Sassuolo is requesting 40 million, the amount offered by Arsenal. Juventus has tried to close the gap by offering certain bonuses that depend on the teams’ performance, the performance of the player and appearances for Locatelli with Juventus and the national team.
Despite these bonuses, the offer does not reach the 40 million that is being requested, who intends to receive this amount in order to sell the midfielder.
Well, that’s disappointing. Very, very disappointing.
As you can probably guess, where Juventus is in the negotiations for Locatelli is seemingly dependent on what Italian media outlet you read. The Sky Italia gang like Di Marzio have reported that Juve and Sassuolo are still pretty far apart, while La Gazzetta dello Sport has made it seem like Juventus are very much willing to raise their bid again and match the €40 million figure Arsenal has tabled to Sassuolo.
Who to believe? Well, that’s the million dollar question in all of this.
We know that Locatelli very much wants to move to Juventus and the player and club have agreed to personal terms on a five-year contract over a month ago. That, you would think, would give Juventus an edge and that Sassuolo is willing to get a deal done because that’s what the player wants rather than a move to Premier League. But, also, it’s a pandemic-impacted market, and that means money will probably talk more than ever before.
Surely, Juve will have to do more if they want to see Locatelli in bianconero next season. And hopefully the next time Sassuolo and Juventus sit down together things are a little more productive and positive as compared to Friday’s meeting.