Over the last couple of years, we’ve seen Danilo’s role within the Juventus squad grow bigger and bigger by the month. He’s gone from a piece of the squad in which nobody was all that enthusiastic about having to now, as we start the 2023 calendar year, a guy who is wearing the captain’s armband more often than not and playing like somebody who deserves to wear it.
He’s also a guy who has a contract expiring in 18 months.
But, as you might have guessed with how Danilo has played for much of his Juve career, as going to be changing soon. According to Italian transfer reporter Nicolo Schira on Sunday night, the expected is very much on the brink of becoming a reality, with Danilo “one step away” from extending his contract through 2026. Danilo, who will turn 32 years old after the 2022-23 season is over, is in the midst of one of the best stretches of his career and has played his way into this kind of situation in which the last big contract he will get comes at a club that has truly embraced him.
This season, Danilo has become more and more of a leader on Max Allegri’s squad with Leonardo Bonucci dealing with multiple extended spells on the sidelines due to injury. It has been during Bonucci’s most recent injury absence that started before the international break in which Danilo has started wearing the captain’s armband, essentially leapfrogging Juan Cuadrado in the pecking order along the way.
It has also been this season in which Danilo has shown even more versatility than he did when he played a hybrid role under Andrea Pirlo. Danilo has played as a right back, he’s played as a center back and, as we’ve seen most recently, he’s played as one of the three central defenders in Juve’s three-man backline, sometimes one that features three Brazilians.
When Danilo’s contract extension does become official — and it feels pretty safe to say it will be happening sooner rather than later — it will most definitely be one that has been earned with his performance on the field and how big of a role he’s got at the club. Danilo is pretty dang important to Juventus, which is something you might not have expected to happen when he first came to Turin from Manchester City.