Saturday October 19 2013
Pogba - to sell or not to sell?

Andrea Agnelli has admitted Juventus may not be able to hold on to Paul Pogba. Alex Mott asks how has it come to this?

"I don't think at the moment we have the strength to retain such a player," Juventus President Andrea Agnelli told a Leaders in Football conference in London last week. “I am trying to think what will be of us in two or three years' time if we get a massive offer for one of the best talents we have today. Would we be able to retain him? I don't know."

Paul Pogba has quickly become one of the best midfielders in Italy – a vital cog to the Bianconeri machine. But as the club’s chief admitted, a big bid could see the 20-year-old off to one of the other major powers in European football.

After joining from Manchester United last summer on a free transfer, a profit of €40m+ may seem like a great piece of business from the Turin club. But it’s a sad indictment of Serie A that one of its leading lights and most promising youngsters can’t, seemingly, be kept by the League’s biggest and most financially successful side.

Antonio Conte’s men have risen from the ashes to become one of the clubs dining at Europe’s top table again, but despite the arrivals of top names like Carlos Tevez and Fernando Llorente – albeit for knock-down prices – the loss of such a fundamental player would be a bitter pill to swallow.

"Look at what happened to Milan,” Agnelli continued in the English capital. “They had to give away Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva to pay the cheques. At the end of the day you can be attractive, but you also need to have the economic strength. If I was to judge it from a footballers' point of view, Italy is no longer the final destination but a transit destination.”

Gone are the glory days of the late 1980s and early 1990s when Serie A was the greatest domestic competition in the world. But is it too much to ask for easily the biggest club on the peninsula to keep its best talent? It’s an age-old debate that has been had many times before – but if Juve are to be successful in the Champions League, surely they have to wave on potentially losing the France international in the hope that he can guide the side to European glory?

Paris Saint-Germain, Arsenal and Chelsea have all been linked with the Le Havre graduate, but the player himself has insisted that he is concentrating on doing well at the Juventus Stadium. “I am not angry that Juventus are talking about a possible transfer,” he told Sky Sport Italia on Tuesday. “I do not know anything about PSG's interest. I am only thinking about Juventus. I am happy here. We have not discussed a contract renewal yet, so there's no news on that front. I am only thinking about football and my agent Mino Raiola takes care of the rest.”

Alongside Claudio Marchisio and Andrea Pirlo, Pobga has become the player everyone at Manchester United thought he would be when he arrived from France in 2009. His calm assurance on the ball, eye for a pass and ferocious shot are now weekly occurrences in Turin. With him holding fort in the middle of the park, the Old Lady could dominate Italy and the continent for years. But with huge figures being dangled in their faces, will it ever come to that?

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Have your say...
I agree that Marco Veratti would be a great addition, but I would far prefer to see him playing alongside Pogba, rather than instead of him. Pirlo has still a season or 2 left so they would be planning for that future. Also bringing the talented Javier Pastore back to Italy from PSG would be great. Pogba, as mentioned, was a great free addition and has done terrific for La Vecchia Signora - I hope he stays in the black & white for many years !!!

Forza Juve !!!!
on the 30th October, 2013 at 3:31pm
The only way for Italian teams to move forward and bring back more talents is by allowing foreign investors to join venture with the local italian investors...join force and sustain the financial and then move towards buying good talents and make the league more interesting... STOP buying players over age 30... Look at Bundesliga... young talents merging in every team... Moggie was a great at bringing in players but he did cost us a big upset.. Conte give youngsters a chance...Dortmund style !!
on the 29th October, 2013 at 12:19am


you think you will get veratti, sirgu and cash for pogba?? are you insane.
on the 23rd October, 2013 at 3:23pm
if Moggi was still with Juve he could sell Marchisio/Pogba/Vidal and rebuild this squad just like he did when he sold Zidane. Not too many GM's have the talent to do that these days.
on the 22nd October, 2013 at 5:26pm
Selling Pogba next summer will depend on his WC performance.

If he guides France into the quarters or even semis, making some key tackles and passes and maybe scoring a few goals, you can easily see the rich clubs knocking and bidding 40m easily if not more.
on the 21st October, 2013 at 1:15pm
The ONLY way they should consider selling him is if PSG offer Verratti, Sirigu and cash. If they do that, Juve can't say no. Otherwise they shouldn't sell. They'll have to over pay on replacements if they get a huge sum of money because clubs will know they have money to spend. So have replacements included in the deal.
on the 21st October, 2013 at 10:59am
i never like this man andrea agnelli since he throw away Alessandro Del Piero out of Turin.

and yes, he will sell Pogba next season. mark my words.
on the 21st October, 2013 at 6:17am
@ Sam De Martino

I think Conte may also have to make a decision. Gigi is the best goalkeeper I have ever seen, but something has gone very wrong. It reminds me of what happened to Cannavaro, whereas a great player hits the wall and loses everything that made them great in an instant. He has made more mistakes this season, than the previous two combined and his fragility has badly effected the defensive unit. Now once the defensive is breached a goal is inevitable, which was never the case.
on the 20th October, 2013 at 10:35pm
I love buffon but i think cesare needs to make a decision. He isnt the great keeper we all love anymore. He has cost juve a goal today against lazio, chievo. At least 4 of goals have been his fault. Its painful watching as you know a mistake isnt far away. Id take a chance on bardi, play him in all games between now and WC.
on the 20th October, 2013 at 7:44pm

Sorry to break to you but he's not going to get a 100 million bid as bale did. Pogba is great but 100 million never. I bet my left hand on that
on the 20th October, 2013 at 1:57pm
So during the last 8 years Milan post players like kaka, schewa, thiago, ibra.. To mention a few. Reality is when city, psg, or real comes knocking or any power house for that madder Juve or any Italian team for that matter won't be able to say no. Welcome to out world
on the 20th October, 2013 at 1:54pm
The thing is, if Juve sell him potential replacements will cost a lot more because clubs will be fully aware of the 40 mil in Juve's bank account. I agree with BOSS, give Pogba a new contract with a huge buy-out clause. If Juve need the money, then I would be more inclined to sell Marchisio-I just don't think that he does enough to affect the play & is often an anonymous figure.
on the 20th October, 2013 at 10:56am
I think Agnelli's comments are completely detrimental to the entire squad. To be stating that you would easily sell one of your best players so readily only 8 games into the season is shocking. Juve need to be thinking further than next the end of the season or the season after. We are at the cusp of being in the top 8 in europe consistently again, and we need to portray this by telling the rest of europe our players are not for sale, and money isn't the be all and end all.
on the 20th October, 2013 at 9:25am
I imagine he'll be at Juve for a few years at least.

Only the oil clubs will be able to afford him if he does keep rising in value, so at least that narrows the "threat" down for Juve.

If he does go, then fleece whoever does buy him

But I don't really see why he has to be sold. Juve could offload a dozen players from their roster that they don't really need that could save 60m euro easily in transfer fees and wages.
on the 20th October, 2013 at 9:05am
Agnelli is right.
Being attractive will not buy you bread. Money will.
If the price is right Pogba will be sold. Sad for Juve and all like me who still foolishly believe in loyalty.

Serie A's glory days had one common denominator : money. Why did the Dutch trio join a Milan that was on the brink of bankruptcy a year prior? Beckham to the LA Galaxy, Eto'o to Anzhi?

a) money
b) prestige
c) stop world hunger
d) pure fun
c) [and my absolute favorite] be part of an "important project"

on the 20th October, 2013 at 3:46am
Selling him in the next year is madness. Pogba is very young and he will only get better in the next 3 years. If he is worth 40 million now, he will be worth even more when he has improved. Keep him for 4-5 years, profit from the success he brings us and then sell him for a HUGE amount when he is 25- 27 years old. That makes sense to me.
on the 20th October, 2013 at 12:56am
@Andrew: Haters always seen to hate, eh? I'm not a Juve fan but they are paving the way forward for all Italian clubs, whether they're owned by Indonesian playboys or corrupt deviant politicians.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 11:58pm
Andrew, Juventus have served their punishment and now deserve success. As Mikkel says "sour grapes"
on the 19th October, 2013 at 10:38pm
P... off Andrew. Sour grapes.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 7:58pm
If Italy pull themselves together and build new stadiums, take EL serious to try to win back the 4th CL spot and sell the clubs like Inter they will rise again. Otherwise forget it. Juve are a rich club with a new stadium. Of course they can keep Pogba unless a Bale offer arrives and it would be great business.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 7:53pm
No way is he going to leave for less than Bale. We would he. A Juve star for the next 12 years.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 7:48pm
I think Angelli would rather cash on Pogba now than take the risk later. That money could be used to buy the only missing piece in Juvi's squad aka a world class winger and it would make juve more competitive in Europe. Juvi can wait a couple more seasons and bag a bigger price but by then their current line up would be 2-3 years older and more players will need to be replaced. Plus there's always the risk that Pogba never lives up to his potential.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 7:16pm
Here is what we do

We make him sign a new contract. Release clause set at 80 million.

We keep him for two more seasons and we take a risk. He could become an epic flop or he could become the next big thing. I'm prepared to take the risk. His stock rises and by the end we sell him less then 80 million making the buying club thinking we are being kind by falling below the buy out clause and we take about 50 or 60 million. That is good money. Pogba isn't going to be the next Vieira.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 6:30pm
Agnelli was making a point about the lack of funds in the italian game. He wants tax reforms to allow Italy to close the gap on Spain; more TV revenue for top clubs; and the stadium law passed asap. He commented on Pogba's future 2-3 years down the line, so he is clearly thinking about the future and not an immediate sale. Calcio needs modernising and Juve can only do so much alone. Calls for cheating are just barbaric and endemic to the problem.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 6:09pm
Surely it would make more sense to keep Pogba for a few more seasons and sell for a potential £100M? Pogba,if his development under Conte continues,will just get better and better and then command an even greater fee? Agnelli does however seem to have one eye on the future. If a European Super League comes to pass, as seems inevitable, then the EPLs disproportionate TV money will disappear and Juve can begin to challenge the big boys again. Us Juventini will just have to suck it up until then.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 5:59pm
Tough one really. It all depends, how/if Juve reinvest the money. I don't really understand how Juve are struggling financially when they made the most out of any team from the champions league, they own there stadium now and didn't exactly spend heavily on players in the summer. But £40 million for a player who has had 1 good season is a lot of money and could be used wisely in other areas.
on the 19th October, 2013 at 5:56pm
Just carry on cheating and you can have whichever players you want...
on the 19th October, 2013 at 5:49pm

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