Chelsea and Manchester City have reportedly set their sights on Miralem Pjanic, who could be on his way out of Juventus this summer.
According to a report by Italian publication Corriere dello Sport, which has been relayed forward by Sport Witness, Miralem Pjanic is the subject of interest from Chelsea and Manchester City. The Bosnian midfielder might be on the transfer list at Juventus this summer, with Premier League his likely destination.
Pjanic has been one of the best midfielders on show in Serie A since first arriving in Italy back in the summer of summer of 2011. The Bosnian international has spent the last four seasons with Juventus, where he has been a key component of a side that has dominated Italian football.
During his stay in Turin, Pjanic has made over 150 appearances for the Bianconeri, scoring 22 goals while providing 32 assists, a healthy return for a player who is primarily a deep lying midfielder. However, Corriere dello Sport (h/t Sport Witness) have claimed that with the player soon turning 30, he could be deemed surplus to requirement. Chelsea and Manchester City are interested in him.
The interest from Chelsea comes as a bit of a surprise, considering midfield is one area where Frank Lampard has faced very little issues over the course of the season. Apart from the first-choice trio of Jorginho, Mateo Kovacic and N’Golo Kante, Lampard has Ruben Loftus-Cheek, Mason Mount and the resurgent Ross Barkley at his disposal in midfield.
With Billy Gilmour also making quite an impression, midfield appears to be sorted for Chelsea. But, reports claim that Juventus could use Chelsea’s interest in Pjanic to get Jorginho as part of a swap deal, in which case a transfer would make sense. Manchester City, though, will provide the Blues some stiff competition in the race to sign Pjanic.
Manchester City’s need to bolster midfield is more necessary, considering club captain David Silva is in the final season of his glittering spell at Etihad. To that end, a move for Saul Niguez has been mooted recently, with Pjanic now emerging as a probable target.
In fact, the report stresses that Manchester City are more serious with their interest in the player than Chelsea are, with Pep Guardiola identifying him as a possible solution in midfield. However, Pjanic, while being capable of playing as a no. 8, will not be a like-for-like replacement for Silva.
It is, thus, intriguing as to how Guardiola will use him, with defensive midfielder Rodri a regular in the Manchester City first-team setup. Having said that, City’s two-year European ban might just be a stumbling block and hand Chelsea the advantage in the race to sign Pjanic.
For now, it looks like Juventus are ready to part ways with Pjanic in the summer transfer window. Should the 29-year-old indeed make his way out of the Allianz Stadium at the end of the season, it will be interesting to see where his next destination lies, with Chelsea and Manchester City vying for his signature.