Manchester United were heavily linked with Arturo Vidal all summer, but no concrete move for the Juventus man ever materialised.
The Juventus hierarchy repeatedly asserted that the Chilean was not for sale, whilst some reports claimed United hesitated due to his injury troubles.
At any rate, deadline day came and the midfielder remains a Bianconeri player. But the saga doesn’t seem to have quite been put to bed permanently.
There have been claims that United are preparing a £35 million January bid for Vidal, with Roma ruling out the sale of fellow Serie A-based midfielder Kevin Strootman in the winter transfer window.
Vidal is currently on the treatment table with a knee injury, not having featured since Juventus’ Serie A opener against Chievo in late August.
Roberto Pereyra deputised for Vidal in the Old Lady’s weekend win over AC Milan. And the Argentine impressed – winning four dribbles, completing 82% of passes and covering vast swaths of ground.
The Argentine is currently on loan at Juventus from Udinese, the Bianconeri holding the option to purchase him outright for £11 million next summer.
According to Calciomercato, the club are so smitten with the ‘magic’ Pereyra that the Bianconeri are already set to pick up this option to bring him to Turin permanently.
The Italian outlet notes that this could have a knock-on effect on Vidal’s future – causing director general Beppe Marotta to heavily consider selling the Chilean star to Untied.
Of course, it’s certainly early days to anoint Pereyra as Vidal’s successor. The 23-year-old has played just 165 total minutes of football in a Juventus shirt.
Juventus may indeed like what they see from Pereyra thus far, but the fact remains that Vidal is one of the best midfielders around and any decision to cash in on him won’t be rushed.
As for United, it remains to be seen if Louis van Gaal and company will ultimately move for Vidal at some point in the future.
But for the time being, what’s clear is that the Chilean will continue to ply his trade his trade in Turin – and it will take a lot more from Pereyra to prove he’s ready take over full time for Vidal.