Juventus experienced a significant amount of change in the most recent summer transfer window as a number of key players departed. Andrea Pirlo, Arturo Vidal, Kingsley Coman and others left Turin. However, the biggest loss may have been that of Carlos Tevez.
The forward was a tour de force for the Serie A heavyweights, with 27 goals and eight assists in 45 appearances across all competitions. His ability to create goals, both as a scorer and a distributor, was extremely important to the Bianconeri, as it gave the team another creative presence to pair with Pirlo and other playmakers, like Claudio Marchisio and Paul Pogba.
Tevez returned to Boca Juniors in his native Argentina. The Argentine’s departure, coupled with the losses of Fernando Llorente and Coman left the cupboard bare in terms of forwards— Alvaro Morata remained as the only incumbent on the roster.
Beppe Marotta brought in Mario Mandzukic from Atletico Madrid and Simone Zaza from Sassuolo. Youngster Guido Vadala also joined from Boca Juniors as part of the Tevez deal. However, the most significant arrival has been that of Paulo Dybala.
The former Palermo forward has been a revelation this season, bagging 14 goals and handing out seven assists across all competitions. Dybala has also averaged three shots per game and two key passes per contest, in addition completing 85.1% of his passes.
Over the past few games, the forward has been extremely proficient. He scored the winning goal against Roma and assisted on the deciding goal away to Sampdoria. Dybala notched a goal and an assist in a win against Hellas Verona while also having a hand in all four goals in a drubbing of Udinese.
The excellent performances, coupled with Dybala’s young age (he’s just 22-years-old), have naturally drawn interest from other clubs. Yahoo Sports recently relayed a report from Tuttosport that said Juve turned down an “80 million euro bid” from Barcelona for the youngster.
Juventus need to continue to reject bids like the reported one from the Blaugrana. Dybala is simply too important.
The forward has replaced his compatriot Tevez in more ways than one. Not only has Dybala started to score more goals, he’s also serving as a creative outlet higher up the pitch, something Tevez excelled at. His creativity has not only made up for Tevez’ departure, but also Pirlo’s. The Italian midfielder’s ability to set up teammates has been missed by Juve, but Dybala’s play has helped make up for the loss.
In addition, the Bianconeri need to keep the team’s young core together in order to build for the future. Dybala, Zaza, Morata, Paul Pogba, Stefano Sturaro, Mario Lemina, Alex Sandro and Daniele Rugani are all under 24-years-old. Keeping that core together will do wonders for the team’s long-term prospects. The attacking trio of Dybala, Morata and Pogba has a chance to be even more dynamic and dangerous in the coming years. They will only get better with time.
What’s more, a replacement forward, like say Edinson Cavani, wouldn’t necessarily bring the same creative spark that Juve need.
Juventus must keep hold of Paulo Dybala for the long haul. The forward has immense potential, and has already started to make good on it. The Bianconeri must refuse to sell Dybala to ensure that the Argentine improves in a Juventus shirt.
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