How Pjanic-Arthur swap could’ve been very different for Juventus

The investigation into Juventus finances has thrown new light on the Miralem Pjanic swap with Arthur Melo, which almost involved other Barcelona players, Chelsea midfielder Jorginho, Manchester United, Valencia and Atletico Madrid.

The club is being investigated by the Turin public prosecutor, the FIGC and UEFA over allegations of financial irregularities.

These include the use of exchange deals with inflated transfer fees to boost capital gains, and one of the switches under the spotlight saw Juve hand Pjanic over to Barcelona with Arthur going the other way in June 2020.

Officially, Pjanic was valued at €60m plus €5m in bonuses, while Arthur was given a valuation of €72m plus €10m in add-ons.

This generated huge capital gains for both clubs, in the region of €43.7m for the Bianconeri.

According to La Gazzetta dello Sport, the wiretapped telephone conversations show the deal had been in the works since the start of March 2020 and could’ve involved several other players and even clubs.

A note written by director Federico Cherubini on March 31 shows that Pjanic was valued at €50m and Mattia De Sciglio €20m, while Arthur was set at €80m and Miranda €10m.

A few days later, Fabio Paratici had boosted those figures to €60m for Pjanic, €30m for De Sciglio, Arthur €85m and Miranda €15m.

By May 27, the situation had changed again, with Pjanic rising to €65m, but also other options on the table.

Scenario B would have Federico Bernardeschi, De Sciglio and Adrien Rabiot moving to Barcelona in exchange for Ansu Fati and Todibo.

Scenario C had Bernardeschi and Ousmane Dembele involved in the swap deal.

The most intriguing was Scenario D, which involved a third club, so Pjanic would go to Barcelona, Jorginho to Juventus and another player to be identified for Chelsea.

Bernardeschi was also floated for an exchange with PSG player Julian Draxler.

Other players mentioned in the papers include Ferran Torres at Valencia, Douglas Costa, Philippe Coutinho, Nelson Semedo and Kourouma.

Atletico Madrid and Manchester United were discussed for possible swap deals, involving Rafinha, Junior Firpo, Araujo, Emerson, Paul Pogba and Sergi Roberto.

In a wiretapped phone call from July 2021, directors Marco Re and Roberto Turati spoke about the deal that was completed with Barcelona.

“Just think someone like Arthur, you paid €75m just to get capital gains off Pjanic, now he’s got to go under the knife too. It was obvious, right? He was never worth that sum. Now you’re stuck with him for four years.”

Juventus sent Arthur Melo to Liverpool on loan with option to buy this summer, but he made only one appearance before sustaining another injury.

One Comment on “How Pjanic-Arthur swap could’ve been very different for Juventus”

  1. Maybe Don Paratici was giving free advice to the once proud Barca and acting as a double agent. Two dodgy clubs with balance sheets cooked up in the parking lot of the 7/9’s Wendy’s drive thru.

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