Ever since Adrien Rabiot signed his one-year contract extension a couple of weeks ago, things have been relatively quiet on the midfield front. There was the whole “Paul Pogba goes to Saudi Arabia” thing, but that definitely seems like an overblown media creation more than something that has concrete legs to it.
Well, as Juve are just a few days away from leaving for the United States tour, there’s a new name on the potential midfield signing front.
That name is former AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie, who is very much looking to be on the outs at Barcelona as they look to offload some money in the same fashion that Cristiano Giuntoli is trying to do at the moment. According to Sky Italia’s Gianluca Di Marzio and Fabrizio Romano amongst others, Juventus are interested in signing the 26-year-old Kessie on loan this summer with an option to buy 12 months from now.
While Di Marzio doesn’t throw out any potential financial figures for a Kessie deal, he reports that the Ivorian has still yet to decide if a return to Italy is something he truly wants. Same goes for actually leaving Barcelona, where he signed just 12 months ago on a free transfer after spending the five previous seasons with Milan.
Sky Italia has since reported that there has been contact between Juventus and Barcelona regarding a potential deal for Kessie. It was mostly to gauge the possibility of something happening — both negotiation between the two of them and Kessie’s willingness to potentially head back to Italy after just a year in Spain.
For now, however, the biggest hold up appears to be Kessie giving the green light to a potential deal before any sport of negotiations between the two sides can get truly underway.
Now, the last time we saw Kessie employed by a Serie A club he was arguably one of the best midfielders in the league. He scored 19 goals in a combined 68 league appearances during his final two years in Milan, with his team winning the Scudetto during his final season at San Siro. He never truly got going at Barcelona, starting just seven out of his 28 appearances in La Liga, scoring one goal and recording five assists over that span.
What signing Kessie would mean for Juventus still remains to be seen. Is there some sort of domino about to fall that we don’t know about yet? Is this the kind of signing that would be more for depth considering Juve’s midfield is already rather crowded? Is this Giuntoli trying his first true buy low kind of move? There’s certainly interest on Juve’s part in Kessie. It’s maybe a little hard to see where he fits into the puzzle just yet, though. (Which is understandable since this roster is so totally in flux and it’s the middle of July.)