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AC Milan and Juventus had agreed a sensational player swap with Federico Bernardeschi set to join the Rossoneri in exchange for Paqueta.
In the last days of the January market, AC Milan and Juventus were in serious talks about a very intriguing player swap. The Rossoneri would have signed Federico Bernardeschi to reinforce the right lane of their attack. In return, the reigning Italian champions would have secured Lucas Paqueta, a midfielder who is still finding little space at AC Milan.
According to Corriere della Sera, there is truth to this rumors and in the very last day of the transfer window Milan and Juventus had practically reached an agreement to swap Bernardeschi with Paqueta. Boban and Maldini were eager to close this deal but negotiations broke down with a direct order from Ivan Gazidis.
Apparently the AC Milan CEO opposed the swap of Bernardeschi with Paqueta because of the Italian’s salary demands. The Italy international earns €4.5 million per season. Gazidis deemed the figure as too high despite the wage bill of the Rossoneri being reduced significantly after the departure of Suso, Piatek, Borini and Rodriguez.
Had it been successful both players would have swapped clubs in an equal deal without the need for AC Milan to offered extra cash to land Bernardeschi. The decision to block the move for economic reasons could prove costly as the Rossoneri were forced to buy 20-year-old Alexis Saelemaekers to cover for Suso.
Gazidis’ decision could also cause the depreciation of Paqueta’s value. The Brazilian talent has become a peripheral figure in midfield and risks becoming just a back up player for the remaining of the season. The arrival of player like Bernardeschi could have improved the squad a lot. The 25-year-old right winger has 24 caps with the national team and more than 90 appearances with Juventus since his €40 million transfer from Fiorentina in 2017.
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