Juventus could pull off a Champions League and a Scudetto double this season but things could have been very different had the move gone through.
There is no shortage of superstars and talented footballers in the Juventus lineup. The Old Lady are one of the strongest teams in Europe at present. With names like Ronaldo, Dybala, Matuidi, Pjanic, Chiellini, Bonnucci on their books, it is a pretty daunting sight for the opposition. With the league more or less wrapped up, the emphasis will be on Europe’s most elite competition. And without doubt, Juve are one of the teams to be beaten in the Champions League. But things wouldn’t have been this rosy had one of their players decided to take up a new challenge last summer.
“There was interest, its true”
Miralem Pjanic concedes that approaches were made post World Cup. But the 28-year-old Bosnia international insists he never gave much thought to making a move prior to penning a new five-year contract. He told Il Giornale, “There was some interest, it’s true, but I had no reason to change club. I don’t know if Juventus will be my last big club, because transfers don’t just depend on the player, but also on the club and who might or might not need you in that role.”
Pjanic also talked about having Cristiano Ronaldo as his teammate. The 28-year-old revealed how he wasn’t in any doubt about how he was a quality addition to the team.“He has always been decisive in the big games, he was born to score important goals. And now we have him in our team. It’s up to us to make the most of his presence. When we have a chat, he tells me that he is happy and confident in the strength of this Juve side.”
The midfielder was confident that the Old Lady can break the curse and lift the elusive Champions League.“I can see that the Champions League will come to Juventus over the next few years. It’s my dream to win it and I am in the ideal place to achieve that dream.”
In a star-studded team, Miralem Pjanić is never going to be the face of this Juventus side. But he is is one of their most important players since arriving as Pogba’s de facto replacement. Pjanic has been pulling the strings from the midfield without hogging much of the limelight.
It is clear from the data (available at understat.com) that how important Pjanic is to the Juventus team in terms of creating chances. He is also a key figure in the buildup, allowing the flair players to influence higher up the pitch. It might not to too long before we put Pjanic in the top bracket of midfielders, if he isn’t in it already.