Paulo Dybala has been a key player for Juventus over the years. Last season wasn’t the best under Massimiliano Allegri, but La Joya has come close to his once again this season. In fact, he has gone from being a disposable property to being a key player once again. Any exit rumours around him, in that sense, make no sense given that Dybala is as much of a football thoroughbred as any of the horses lined up for the Melbourne Cup 2020 later this year.

Tuttosport (via SportWitness) have suggested that Juve are interested in Harry Kane for the upcoming summer transfer window. But the report also states that a deal involving Kane and Dybala could be on the cards for the summer.

While it isn’t to say that Kane is a bad player or because Dybala is a bad player. But because the times aren’t quite right for a situation like this to come up. And it is more about La Joya than about the England captain.

Dybala, of course, was close to a move to Spurs in the 2019 summer window. Talks went on till the deadline day when the move fell off due to image rights issues. Manchester United were looking to swap the Argentine and Romelu Lukaku but the same image rights issues held up the deal. Throughout this phase, Dybala was being pushed out by the bianconeri.

Juve were looking to sell multiple players in an attempt to sign Mauro Icardi. Like Dybala, they failed with many sales. But Dybala proved their perception wrong soundly when the campaign started off.

In Sarri’s 4-3-1-2 shape, Dybala was to have a place. His first start came against Hellas Verona but he contributed to as many as four goals in the next five games. Since then, there has been a consistent flow of goals and assists from the former Palermo man. In Serie A, he has contributed to 16 goals in 24 games. In all competitions, he has contributed to 25 goals in 34 games as well.

He couldn’t use his abilities to the full in a wing-play based system under Allegri. He made only 1.7 key passes per game last season, completing as many dribbles per game. The structured system saw him get shunted wide and not get the freedom to cut inside. But under Sarri, he has the ball in central areas and because of the possession-based system, he gets more of the ball.

As a result, he has come up with two key passes per game, while also coming up with 1.9 dribbles per game. It is a solid improvement from last season and he’s now in a preferred system and in a preferred shape.

Dybala has come up with crucial goals against Inter, Atalanta and Milan. He recently scored against Inter, also helping the side get a point away to Lecce. He got a couple of assists against Paulo Fonseca’s Roma, being key in a 2-1 win at the Stadio Olimpico.

All that points to how Dybala’s rebirth has come under Sarri, who deserves credit for it. He could have easily left if Allegri was still there, but Sarri’s system and approach has brought him back to his best.

Sarri has seen his trust for Dybala over the last few months. He recently said: “Dybala gives us quality and more solutions going forward.”

Juventus’ midfield issues have seen them become rather stagnant. Because of that, they have had to rely on a bunch of players for their individual quality. Dybala is one of them. Without him, they could have been fighting for top-four. And there is no chance they sell him.

Chris Darwen
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