Arturo Vidal will not join Manchester United this summer, according to Juventus general manager, Giuseppe Marotta, who insisted the Chile international is “not for sale” and “happy to be at the club”, despite rumours suggesting otherwise over the last couple of weeks.
Vidal has long been linked with a move to Old Trafford this summer, with reports suggesting he could be moving to United for around £32m, while other sources claimed United would try and get the Chilean for a cheaper fee and some reports in the Italian press last night suggested that United were ready to present a €44m – £35m – offer for the 27-year-old.
Juventus were last night rocked by the sudden and unexpected resignation of Antonio Conte, who departed the club after winning three consecutive Serie A titles. Conte’s departure was seen by many as yet another indication that Juventus might indeed be bracing themselves for allowing one between Vidal and Paul Pogba to leave the club, but the Serie A champions today dismissed such notions.
“Vidal is not for sale,” Marotta said today, in a press conference organised for the official unveiling of new Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri.
“He is one of the most important players in the squad. He is happy to be here. Many things have been written.
“We’ve never put him up for sale. Important clubs have asked after him, but we have never sat down to talk. The player decides and yesterday Vidal showed that he is happy to continue with us.”
With each passing day the saga surrounding the Chilean midfielder gets more complicated, with contrasting reports emerging from different sources.
According to Jamie Jackson, Manchester’s football correspondent for the Guardian, United have decided against opening talks with Juventus for the Chilean, as he was a David Moyes’ target and while Louis Van Gaal is still considering the Juventus midfielder as an option, the United manager is thought to be willing to explore his alternatives first.
Jackson’s story contradicts Andy Mitten’s reports from yesterday, in which claimed that a deal to bring Vidal to United was indeed being worked on. Readers of United We Stand, the fanzine which is edited by Mitten himself, will be well aware of how well linked and extremely reliable he is and while Jackson and other journalists are also well linked with club’s sources, they might have simply being briefed different informations.
After the shambles that unfolded 12 months ago, United look determined to keep their very close to their chest this summer and while it’s harder to guess the club’s strategy, the current approach is much more sensible than the one Moyes and Ed Woodward adopted last year.
On the other hand, Marotta’s quotes about Vidal should be taken with a pinch salt given the circumstances in which Juventus find themselves at the moment. Conte’s departure has sparked discontent among their fans, who have not only been disappointed by his resignations but also by the club’s decision to replace him with former AC Milan manager Allegri and when one considers the situation surrounding the Serie A champions, their stance on Vidal seems perfectly logical.