According to reports from Calciomercatoweb, Juventus are ready to make a move for Hector Bellerin.
The 22-year-old is reportedly open to leaving Arsenal after being rumoured to have fallen out with Arsene Wenger. The manager is arguably within his rights not to be happy with Bellerin whose performances, one might argue, have steadily declined since his impressive breakthrough in 2015.
Back then – and perhaps in the first three months of the 16/17 campaign prior to injury – we saw an exciting young right-back, who provided both attacking thrust and defensive awareness. Not only could he attack central areas if the wide man in front of him hugged the touchline, he could also recover his position out of possession due to his pace.
More recently, the energy in his performances has dropped. While the Spaniard still gets high up the pitch, he very often passes sideways back to one of the central midfielders, thus stifling potential for attacking momentum.
It came as no surprise therefore, when Bellerin was benched for the 2-1 defeat at Brighton and failed to even make the match-day squad for Sunday’s 3-0 victory over Watford.
Alternative right-back Ainsley Maitland-Niles, who appears to possess all the qualities his counter-part used to have, threatens to make the position his own. This development therefore could impact the way Arsenal handle transfer inquiries for the player.
It has been claimed that Wenger will not sell the former La Masia product for anything less than €50m: he was heavily linked with a return to Camp Nou in the summer, but both clubs were far apart in their valuation of the player.
If giants Barcelona weren’t going to pay full price for Bellerin in June though, it is hard to see Juve – who are operating with a smaller budget – will do it after Bellerin’s continued decline in form.
The Bianconeri have long been admirers of Bellerin, who has made 151 appearances and scored seven goals for the Gunners. Should Wenger be willing to drop his asking price though, this summer could be the one that sees the player and club part ways.