According to reports in Italy, Javier Mascherano will sign a contract extension with Barcelona and in turn end talk of a move to Juventus this summer.
The Argentine international had been linked with an exit from the Catalan giants after becoming unsettled, but it appears as though he is set for u-turn.
Juve have already completed the signing of Dani Alves this week from Barca, but it doesn’t appear as though the Brazilian’s former teammate will be joining him in Turin.
According to Calciomercato, Mascherano will be offered a new contract by Barca that will extend his stay with the club after joining them in 2010.
It adds to sporting director Ariedo Braida’s comments to the media:
“It is certain that Javier will not play for Juventus next season,” Braida told Rai. “He’ll stay with us.”
However, it is claimed that it comes with a warning, in that the veteran midfielder wants a salary increase and long-term security with the new deal.
If that criteria isn’t met, then perhaps it will be open up for Juve to exploit the situation at the Nou Camp and tempt him into a new challenge in Italy.
From Barca’s perspective, they will want to keep hold of him given his continued importance to Luis Enrique, although they may well not see eye-to-eye on personal terms.
Juve will be eager to continue to strengthen their squad ahead of next season, with Massimiliano Allegri hoping to continue to dominate domestically as well as mount a serious challenge to win the Champions League.
Mascherano’s arrival would certainly help that bid, with the 32-year-old bringing a wealth of knowledge, experience and quality with him.