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Manchester United star Matteo Darmian has welcomed speculation linking him with Juventus.
The former Torino full-back has reportedly informed the Bianconeri of his desire to join them this summer, per Tuttosport (h/t The Sun‘s Andrew Richardson), and he has now publicly discussed a potential switch.
He told Sky Sport (h/t Calciomercato): “Juventus? I have not decided yet. I am happy Juventus are interested in me. Juve are a great club and I am happy for that. I will think about a possible move when it will be the right time.”
The Italian added that while he has enjoyed his time at Old Trafford, he longs for his homeland.
“I’m living a great experience here in England,” he said. “I’d say yes to United again. It’s one of the best clubs in the world. I won several trophies here but I miss Italy. Let’s see what happens at the end of the season. Now the priority is to end the season in the best way possible.”
The 28-year-old has struggled to nail down a starting berth since his arrival in 2015, but football writer Liam Canning was optimistic for him at the start of this season:
Liam Canning @LiamPaulCanning
Best performance I’ve seen from Matteo Darmian was in the Europa League final. Seems to have taken that form into pre-season. Big year ahead
However, he has made just 13 appearances totalling 847 minutes on the pitch, and he has played just one minute in the Premier League since December 2.
Samuel Luckhurst of the Manchester Evening News recently criticised Darmian:
Samuel Luckhurst @samuelluckhurst
High time Mourinho dug out players. Matteo Darmian a case in point today on his wife’s Instagram. Injured or not, he is comfortable and carefree at United, and lacks the basic professionalism required at #mufc. Some others need to be fighting for their careers at the club.
It seems a change of scenery would do him good, and a return to Italy could help him revitalise his career while he’s still in his prime.
He’ll have done especially well if he manages to join a club of Juve’s stature off the back of a disappointing spell in the Premier League, and he could be a useful buy for them if he’s able to get back to his best.
United will likely relish the chance to clear him off the books this summer, so it should come down to whether Juventus are convinced they can jump-start his career.