“Rugani? Daniele is one of the best centre-backs in Italy and one of the best in Europe. In Italy we still have the best.”
Rugani might have found starts hard to come by at Juventus last season but that does not mean that Max Allegri is not a fan.
Speaking to Calciomercato in April, the then-Juve boss was determined to heap the praise on a player who, from an outside perspective, he didn’t appear to rate.
But, for all Allegri’s public acclaim, that should not distract from the fact that Rugani averaged just 14 Serie A starts per season in four years under the former Milan boss. But then again, forcing your way into a back line containing Georgio Chiellini, Leo Bonucci and the evergreen Andrea Barzagli is easier said than done.
At the age of 25, the former Empoli man is at a crossroads in his career. Staying at Juve is a guarantee of trophies but he doesn’t deserve to become Turin’s answer to Nacho – a versatile squad player used only when injuries or suspensions strike.
According to the Times, Wolverhampton Wanderers have made a £30 million bid.
And, while Rugani won’t be winning league titles or competing for the top European honours at Molineux, the chance to be a central figure in one of Europe’s most ambitious sides should have Rugani wondering whether his time at Juventus has run its course.
Yes, Allegri has gone, as has the now-retired Barzagli. But Matthijs de Ligt, Merih Demirel and Cristian Romero are in at the Allianz Stadium. Rugani finds himself in a rather unique position where he needs to make a step down in order to progress.
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