The center-back position has been a bit of a worry for Juventus this season. Over the last years, Juventus built a long list of successes and achieved several trophies thanks to his solid defensive line. However, in this season, partially due to the different gameplay implement by Andrea Pirlo, new Juventus’ manager, the solid bianconeri wall seems less impenetrable.
Once upon a time there was the BBC, which is not the well-known British television network (and not even a category of…). It was a solid black and white wall composed by Leonardo Bonucci, Andrea Barzagli e Giorgio Chiellini. Or let’s make it BBBC adding Gianluigi Buffon. What remains of that impenetrable structure is not much. Barzagli retired in 2019 and both Chiellini and Buffon may join him soon. In addition, Chiellini is suffering too many injuries and it may be time to spend more time with the family. Leonardo Bonucci, the youngest one, without Chiellini perfectly fit has shown to be an average defender incapable of filling the void left by the Juventus’ captain.
Juventus’ management invested in younger players in view of the upcoming retirement of Giorgio Chiellini acquiring the promising Matthijs de Ligt and Merih Demiral, respectively 21 and 22 years old. However, the reliability shown by the two young defenders is limited and it seems that a more experienced defender may be needed.
According to CalcioMercato, Juventus seems to be interested in buying Sokratis Papastathopoulos, 32-year old Greek center-back. The Arsenal defender is in the last year of his contract and has been left out of the English Premier League squad. The message from Arsenal seems to be clear that they want him gone. The question is whether Juventus needs someone like Sokratis or it would be better to look elsewhere. In other words, is Sokratis the best choice in the market?
We highly doubt that despite we are aware that an experienced defender could be a good signing for Juventus right now. The current Juventus squad is full of youngsters who are still finding their way and, if Juventus wants to keep winning in Serie A and remain competitive in the Champions’ League, waiting for those young players is not an option.
But, going back to Sokratis, the Greek defender has found it tough in the Premier League always struggling against fast forwards and having an average disciplinary record. Recent performances have been definitely poor and Arsenal was almost forced to abandon him to his destiny.
An interesting alternative could be represented by Stefan Savic, 29-year old Atletico Madrid center-back. According to recent rumors, it appears that Juventus already tried to sign Savic in the past. The incoming January transfer window could be the perfect moment to try again to buy the Montenegrin defender. Unlike Sokratis, Savic is in his prime and it could give enough time to the young De Ligt and Demiral to grow with no hurry.