The question that we’ve been asking for ten years now is whether Juventus‘ time as champions is done. There have been seasons when they’ve looked like racing certainties (sometimes at a useful price) and years where they’ve looked vulnerable, but never have I been so convinced that they will lose their crown. I’m not sure, in fact, that they will even come close to holding onto it.
After Juve finished well enough to win the League for the ninth consecutive time last season, they looked tired. Tired, and old, and short of ideas, and in need of regeneration. They had made some terrible decisions in the transfer market (Federico Bernardeschi, Aaron Ramsey) and needed to make some good ones. I’m not sure that they have.
Juve have lost Miralem Pjanic to Barcelona, and got Arthur in a sort of return, while Weston McKennie has come in the fill a Blaise Matuidi-shaped hole in midfield. Dejan Kulusevski had already signed, but the spine of the team will be largely the same, and while there is still quality in the shape of Rodrigo Bentancur, Paulo Dybala and Alex Sandro, can you honestly look at that Juventus squad and say that they can challenge on two fronts? I’m not sure that you can.
In case you’re wondering, I haven’t forgotten Cristiano Ronaldo, but he merits a paragraph of his own. The rumours from good sources at the club suggest that Andrea Pirlo has been appointed to pacify Ronaldo, and a group