Juventus defender Leonardo Bonucci has revealed Manchester City attempted to sign him in 2016, and approached him again last summer.
Bonucci, 34, has enjoyed a trophy-laden career exclusively in Italy, turning out for the likes of Juventus, Milan and Inter, as well as acquiring 111 caps for the national side, in which he won Euro 2020 in the summer.
The Juve stalwart recently put in a valiant display as Massimiliano Allegri’s side kept a clean sheet and secured a 1-0 win over European champions and Premier League heavyweights Chelsea in the Champions League group stages.
That result in Turin on Wednesday night was only the third time Bonucci has faced the Blues during his career, meeting the west Londoners in the 2012/13 groups, but his duels with the club could have been more regular had City succeeded in their attempts to sign him.
Qualifying readers* can take advantage of the offer above in three steps:
- Follow this link to register with Unibet
- Deposit £10 or more into your new account
- Receive money back as a bonus worth up to £40 if you bet loses (+ £10 casino)
*18+ only. Be Gamble Aware. New customers only. Min deposit £10. Money back as bonus if first bet loses. Wagering requirements: sportsbook 3x at min. odds of 1.40 (2/5), casino 35x. Unless forfeited the sportsbook bonus must be wagered before using the casino bonus. Bonus expires 7 days after opt-in. No deposit required for NI customers. Call 08081699314 to claim. Full T&Cs apply.
When Pep Guardiola first moved to City in 2016, Bonucci has now revealed the club came agonisingly close to securing his signature, only for the Italian giants to pull out at the eleventh hour. Two more attempts would following in the ensuing years, but both fell flat.
“I had this dream of being coached by Pep,” Bonucci told The Athletic. “The closest we came was in 2016. I was on the brink of joining City. We were down to the very last details then Juventus decided not to sell.
“We decided to stay together. Then, when I went to AC Milan, I could have gone to City but several things had to fall into place for it to happen. I’d also given my word to Milan. Last year, I spoke to Pep again.
“He wanted me but I told him: ‘Juventus is my home. I’m happy here. I feel at home here’. I wanted to make up the ground I lost by going to Milan for a season.
“Becoming a symbol of Juventus again is the most exciting thing I could be doing in my career right now.”
18+ | New UK Customers Only | If your account has Sportsbook losses at the end of your first day’s betting, QuinnBet will refund 50% of your losses as a Free Bet up to £25 (min 3 bets) Plus 50 Free Spins on Grand Spinn. Even if your account is up, you’re guaranteed a £5 Free Bet Plus 50 Free Spins provided you place at least 1 bet of £10 or greater at the minimum odds. T&Cs apply | BeGambleAware.org.
18+ only. New UK customers only. Min Deposit: £5. Maximum Free Bet: £30. First bet on a Football multiple with 3+ selections. Overall odds: 3.00 (2/1) or higher. Free Bets available upon settlement of the qualifying bet. Debit card deposits only. This is offer is valid for 7 days from your new account being registered. 18+ BeGambleAware.org. Full terms apply.
18+ only • New customers only • Min deposit £/€/$10 • A qualifying bet is a ‘real money’ stake of at least £/€/$10 • Min odds 1/2 (1.50) • Free Bets are credited upon qualifying bet settlement and expire after 7 days • Free Bet stakes are not included in returns • Casino Bonus must be claimed within 7 days, wins are capped at £/€/$500 • To withdraw bonus/related wins, you must wager the bonus amount up to 40 times its value within 14 days • Casino Bonus expires after 60 days • Casino Bonus can be used on selected games in casino only • Restrictions apply to withdrawals, payment methods & countries & full T&Cs apply • BeGambleAware •