Stefano Sturaro may have only been a bit-part player for Juventus last season, starting 11 Serie A games as they seized a sixth straight Scudetto, but that does not mean he is not a valued member of Max Allegri’s squad.
Sturaro is, after all, that most useful of beasts – a jack of many trades. The Italian international has largely been utilised in central midfield under Allegri but has been earmarked as a potential stand-in at full-back when required.
Juve have so far been unable to replace Dani Alves with Portuguese international Joao Cancelo (below) joining Serie A rivals Inter Milan instead and Atalanta refusing to let Leonardo Spinazzola return to Turin halfway through his two-year loan agreement.
Therefore, the energetic and versatile Sturaro has been tipped to fill in on the right hand side of defence when required in the upcoming campaign. As a result, a summer move that once appeared inevitable may be increasingly unlikely with a week of the transfer window remaining.
And this will come as a blow to Everton, with the report adding that The Toffees were interested in making a late move for the midfielder with three Serie A titles on his CV.
Everton have spent big reinforcing their midfield but the 24-year-old could complement the attacking additions of Gylfi Sigurdsson and Davy Klaassen by adding a further tenacity and energy in a deeper role.
However, with no new right-backs arriving at Juventus any time soon, Sturaro could be set for an extended stay and a new role.