Maurizio Sarri has explained how Juventus were open to selling Paulo Dybala because his squad is currently too congested for the Champions League.
The Argentine was heavily linked with a move to the Premier League during the latter stages of the English transfer window, but interest from Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur eventually petered out.
Why are Juve open to parting with Dybala? Five things to know…
- Following the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo last summer, Dybala was reduced to a less prominent role.
- As such, his name has been associated with a move to Man Utd and Spurs.
- It was believed the Lilywhites were about to sign Dybala on deadline day but his purported move collapsed.
- Sarri has now explained that Dybala could yet work in his system as a false 9.
- However, he has stated that he still needs to cut six senior members from his CL squad to meet UEFA’s quota.
Since the arrival of Cristiano Ronaldo in Turin, Dybala has been forced to play a less significant role than he has previously been accustomed to since relocating from Palermo in 2015.
And while a move away from the Old Lady looked set in stone last week, Sarri has since opened the door for Dybala to thrive in his system, though he explained that Juve still need to trim their Champions League squad to match UEFA’s size specifications for the competition.
He told reporters: “Sometimes, I get really astonished when I read the papers. You go on about Sarri’s choices, the choices of [Juventus sporting director Fabio] Paratici.
“Did you look at the Juventus squad? We have to cut six players to fit into the Champions League list, which I haven’t read anywhere. Otherwise these choices might look insane.
“We have to cut six players from the current squad and that puts me in a difficult position. The last 20 days of the market will be difficult for us, it’s an embarrassing situation, because we risk having to leave out players of a very high level.
“It’s a situation we have to resolve and it is not just about the decisions made by coach or club.”
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“He has the characteristics to play in that role”
Dybala played the last half-hour in Juve’s 2-1 defeat to Atletico Madrid in their final pre-season match of the summer, and after the match Sarri stated his beliefs the South American possesses all the requisite attributes to suit his style.
He added: “Dybala only had two training sessions with me, so all evaluations are premature. Clearly, he can’t be at the top of his condition physically and that also affects what he can do as a False 9.
“I think he has the characteristics to play in that role, but we’ll have to see how we can fill the penalty area with that solution.
“As I said before, I can talk to Dybala all I like, but the market goes in a certain direction and my opinion counts for zero. We have to cut six players, that’s all there is to it.”