Juventus have stepped up their pursuit of Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic as they eye the Serbian as Paul Pogba’s ideal replacement.
The 27-year-old is on Juve’s short-list along with Paris Saint-Germain’s Blaise Matuidi and Luis Gustavo of Wolfsburg.
However, Chelsea coach Antonio Conte wants to keep Matic and believes he can turn him into a world star.
Matic also last week revealed that he was delighted to feel wanted by Antonio Conte and hinted he was happy to stay at Stamford Bridge.
But the Serbia international, who rejoined from Benfica for £25million in January 2014, has not ruled out a move.
Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane is pondering over a move but may go for Newcastle’s Moussa Sissoko.
Matic has featured regularly under Conte in pre-season and it will take a huge offer for the club to consider selling.
In Chelsea’s pre-season matches, Eden Hazard again looked lively, and with two defensive midfielders happy to sit back, he becomes less responsible for covering defensively.
Matic himself got further forward as a result, whilst still slotting in alongside new signing Kante when required. After Kante’s introduction, Matic found himself harrying and chasing down opposition players higher up the pitch – adding another facet to Chelsea’s defensive unit.
Earlier, Tuttomercatoweb reported if Napoli’s Marco Parolo completes a move to Chelsea, it would be Nemanja Matic who would see himself at risk of losing his starting role.
Juventus have already shifted their focus to Premier League in order to fill up the gap in midfield left by Pogba.
Matic may, in fact, be open to a move to Turin if he fails to convince Conte prior to the end of the summer transfer window.
Juventus are undoubtedly an extremely appealing destination for any player in Europe, and Matic can undoubtedly find an important role in Massimiliano Allegri’s midfield.