Barcelona and Juventus have reportedly opened talks over Miralem Pjanic’s return to Turin, with the Catalans interested in three Bianconeri stars. A report from Daily Express says, Matthijs de Ligt, Alex Sandro, and Rodrigo Bentancur are potential counterparts in a deal that would see the 31-year-old come back to Italy.
Pjanic joined Barcelona last summer in a co-ordinate swap deal involving Arthur Melo but has failed to find his feet at Camp Nou. A thoroughly underwhelming season under Ronald Koeman saw the Bosnia & Herzegovina international make just six La Liga starts in 2020/21.
Indeed, the ex-Roma playmaker has found himself bottom of the pecking order, with Sergio Busquets, Frenkie de Jong, and young duo Ilaix Moriba and Pedri all being prioritized over the Bosnian.
Pjanic is said to be keen on reuniting with Massimiliano Allegri at the Allianz Stadium. He has already instructed his representatives to secure him a safe passage. During his four-year stint in Turin, the midfielder established himself as a household name in European football.
Therefore, Pjanic believes a reunion with Allegri could help him get his career back on track.
Meanwhile, Barcelona are willing to offload their outcast after a single season, but they would like to get at least one Juventus player in return.
The Catalans are in the market for a top-class defender after Koeman deemed Samuel Umtiti surplus to requirements. Clement Lenglet’s patch form is another reason the La Liga giants are desperate to land a new centre-back this summer.
Matthijs de Ligt, who had rejected a move to Barcelona before joining Juventus from Ajax, is a priority. The 21-year-old has already regretted his decision to turn down Barca’s proposal and would like to swap allegiances in the coming months.
However, the Bianconeri are adamant the Dutchman is untouchable and are not ready to discuss his departure.
Another name on Barcelona’s list is defensive midfielder Rodrigo Bentancur. The Uruguay international has emerged as a backup option for prime target Georginio Wijnaldum, who is on the brink of joining Paris Saint-Germain.
The 23-year-old is a versatile player as he can deliver from deep inside the midfield but is also comfortable in more advanced positions.
Last but not least is Alex Sandro, the Brazilian left-back who has two more years left to run on his contract at Juventus. Although Jordi Alba nailed down the left-back position at Barcelona as his own, the Spaniard lacks a reliable cover.
Widely regarded as one of the best players in his position, the 30-year-old has been an undisputed starter at Juventus since his arrival from Porto in 2015.