Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic is now reportedly considered a back-up option by Juventus, who will focus their attention on Axel Witsel in January.
The Belgian international was linked with a move to Turin this past summer, but a move from Zenit St Petersburg failed to materialise on the final day of the window.
La Gazzetta dello Sport have reported that the Bianconeri are prepared to launch one final assault for the midfielder with a £5.5m bid in January, and if that’s rejected, then they will wait until the summer when they will be able to sign him on a free.
Meanwhile, the pink paper goes on to add that Nemanja Matic and Blaise Matuidi are considered as back-up options for Juve in January, and if they fail to sign Witsel, then one of the pair will be targeted and signed to bolster Massimiliano Allegri’s midfield.
The Serie A champions lost Paul Pogba to Manchester United in the summer, and although they will hope to welcome back Claudio Marchisio from injury next month to add to the likes of Miralem Pjanic and Sami Khedira, they could yet move to strengthen their midfield further in January.
Matic, who has made nine appearances in all competitions for Chelsea so far this season, has been an important part of Antonio Conte’s plans since he took charge at Stamford Bridge and so it’s likely that Juve will meet resistance in their bid to sign the Serbian star.
Having been linked with him previously, as noted in the report, it probably won’t reflect too well on Juve that they ultimately see the 28-year-old as a back-up option now.