Juventus are willing to sell one of their young prospects to Sassuolo in order to get negotiations for Manuel Locatelli over the line.
The midfielder enjoyed a terrific 2020/2021 season and his performances for Italy at Euro 2020 have only enhanced his reputation. Locatelli started off the tournament in terrific form before being replaced in the starting XI by Marco Verratti upon his return from injury.
He has been linked with a move away from Sassuolo for some time, with Manchester City said to be interested earlier this year. More recently Arsenal have joined the race for his signature – though he is widely expected to sign for Juventus soon.
According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, negotiations are now in their final stages with Locatelli turning down interest from other clubs and indicating that he wants to join Juventus. However, an agreement has not quite been reached yet.
Sassuolo are standing firm in their asking price of €40m and have rejected proposals from the Old Lady to pay this in instalments. What may finally get the deal over the line is Juventus offering up one of their younger prospects.
Sassuolo have a terrific track record of developing young stars and there are several Juve players who might benefit from a move to the Neroverdi. Nicolo Rovella is one name that has been mentioned. He has already made a string of first team appearances for Genoa – the side Juventus signed him from before sending him back out on loan – but the fact his loan deal does not expire until the end of the season could make things tricky.
Midfielder Nicolo Fagioli, who has only made one senior appearance, could be a more a realistic option. Gianluca Frabotta – a 22-year-old left-back who has featured sparingly for Juventus in recent seasons – is another option.