Report: Federico Chiesa Targeted by Juventus, Manchester United and Chelsea

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistNovember 2, 2018

ROME, ITALY - OCTOBER 07:  Enrico Chiesa of ACF Fiorentina reacts during the Serie A match between SS Lazio and ACF Fiorentina at Stadio Olimpico on October 7, 2018 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by Paolo Bruno/Getty Images)
Paolo Bruno/Getty Images

Juventus reportedly want Fiorentina winger Federico Chiesa to follow Federico Bernardeschi's example by moving to Turin from Florence next year, but Manchester United and Chelsea are also said to be in the hunt.

The Old Lady signed Bernardeschi from La Viola in 2017, and Tuttosport (h/t IlBianconero, via Calciomercato.com) reported Massimiliano Allegri hopes to repeat the manoeuvre by landing Chiesa in 2019.

It's noted in the report United and Chelsea were also each linked with wide man Bernardeschi before he joined the Bianconeri, and they'll be adamant to avoid losing a similar saga with Chiesa.

Chiesa, 21, made his competitive first-team debut for Fiorentina against Juventus in August 2016. He's racked up 82 appearances for the club and has quickly ascended to become one of Serie A's dribbling kingpins, per OptaPaolo:

OptaPaolo @OptaPaolo

21 - Federico #Chiesa has completed the most dribbles (21) in the Serie A 2018/19. Peppy.

Juve full-back Joao Cancelo (3.0) is the only player in Italy's top flight who has averaged more dribbles per game than Chiesa (2.4) this season, per WhoScored.com.

United manager Jose Mourinho has plenty of competition between Anthony Martial and the out-of-form Alexis Sanchez on his left flank, but the right wing isn't so healthily stocked, with Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard often played there out of position.

Talk of a move for Chiesa may not be as strong had Sanchez hit the ground running in his first full season in Manchester. However, he's been benched or out of the squad in six of United's 14 matches this campaign, and journalist Samuel Luckhurst recently noted the change in Mourinho's attitude to his fitness:

Samuel Luckhurst @samuelluckhurst

Mourinho on Sanchez in August: 'I think he is in a fantastic condition.' Today: 'He is struggling with his condition.' #mufc https://t.co/ajZLviLVZ4

Chelsea are thriving early on in life under new manager Maurizio Sarri and may wish to revive interest in Chiesa, although Calciomercato's report mentioned his old club, Napoli, are said to have first option on La Viola's ace.

The son of ex-Serie A journeyman and Italy international Enrico, Chiesa can play on either flank and, like Bernardeschi, is also adept playing through the middle channels.

This could hint at Juve's plan for the player, as Bianconeri blogger Arjun Pradeep highlighted a possible home for Bernardeschi away from the wings:

Arjun Pradeep @IndianRegista

@westonpagano @TheCristianoGuy Bernardeschi is most lethal when he is more towards the centre of the pitch. He had his best performances for Fiorentina as a 10 [trequartista]. He has clarity and creativity. He is versatile and can play on the flanks too but he doesn't have the speed of Douglas Costa/Cuadrado.

United and Chelsea may be more financially equipped to make a move for Chiesa, particularly after Juventus took a heavy hit to their resources after signing Cristiano Ronaldo for £100 million this past summer.

Ronaldo's signing could help acquire resources as soon as 2019, however, if Juventus do well—particularly in Europe—which would allow them to compete more strongly for Chiesa.