Barcelona’s bid to land Miralem Pjanic from Juventus could be usurped at the last minute, with Maurizio Sarri keen to agree a swap deal with former club Chelsea that involves Jorginho.
Bosnian international Pjanic is understood to have already agreed terms with Barça ahead of a potential summer move, even though terms have not been agreed between the two clubs.
But that move could now be scuppered as Sarri, who was in charge of Chelsea for just one season – winning the Europa League – is keen to raid his former club for midfield maestro Jorginho, who he also worked with at Napoli.
News of the potential switch comes from Gianluca Di Marzio, who claim that this deal is Sarri’s preferred option – rather than pursuing a deal with Barcelona that would see Arthur Melo head to the Allianz Stadium.
30-year-old Pjanic has established himself as one of Europe’s most effective deep-lying playmakers, winning five Serie A titles in a row with Juventus. But despite his success, he’s been told that he can leave the club this summer as I Bianconeri look to shake things up in Turin.
With the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic likely to have a significant impact on the upcoming transfer window, Juventus have had to make changes. They have already imposed a salary cap on any potential new signings, and appear to only be preparing bids on marquee players if they can offer one of their own in exchange.
This could be ideal news for Chelsea, as Pjanic would offer a direct replacement if Jorginho was tempted to reunite with his former boss for a third time.
Sarri previously worked with Jorginho at Napoli where the midfielder was the fulcrum through which the ‘Sarri-ball’ style of play was perfected. The pair had much success in Naples, which prompted the Italian boss to take him to the Premier League in the summer of 2018.
Jorginho has improved under Frank Lampard this season, but had a number of critics during his debut campaign at Stamford Bridge.
Recently, the midfielder admitted he was close to leaving Chelsea, such was the backlash he received from fans for his commitment to Sarri’s style of play.
“Last year, fans were picking on me a lot because I’d arrived with another manager and, in my opinion, I ended up hearing some things that were honestly unfair,” he said.
“But I’ve never challenged the views of the fans and other people who criticised me. Quite the opposite, actually – it gave me strength because inside I knew they were wrong. Deep in my mind, it was like this: ‘I’m going to prove they’re wrong and work quietly like I’ve always do.'”