Manchester United transfer target Adrien Rabiot has told Juventus he wants to stay in Turin and fight for his place in the squad, according to reports in Italy. The defensive midfielder had been linked with a possible move to Old Trafford in the summer as part of a swap deal including Paul Pogba.
United’s hopes of including Rabiot in a summer deal, that would see Pogba going in the other direction, appear to now be dashed after the Frenchman decided he wants to stay at Juventus.
According to Italian publication CalcioMercato, Rabiot has made the decision and has informed Juve of what he wants to do.
Rabiot left PSG in the summer to join Juventus on a free transfer, but since making he has found his minutes have been limited under manager Maurizio Sarri.
So far this season Rabiot has only been involved in 22 games for the club, with around a third of those appearances coming off the bench.
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The midfielder had been a transfer target for Everton in the summer, with Carlo Ancelotti considering making a move for his former player, although no move materialised.
The 24-year-old had recently been linked with being used as part of a swap deal that would see Pogba secure his return to Juve, but the Rabiot has made it clear he wants to stay and prove himself at the club.
The report claims he is also ready to challenge Pogba for a place in Juve’s starting XI if they are successful in signing the United midfielder.
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Pogba has struggled to recover from an ankle injury this season and even required surgery to try and rectify the issue.
The 26-year-old has only made eight appearances for United this campaign, during which time he has failed to find the back of the net but has provided two assists.
His agent, Mino Raiola, appears desperate to see Pogba leave United this summer and even recently claimed the World Cup winner would “love” to go back to Juventus.
“Italy is like home for Paul,” Raiola told Sky Sports News.
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“The question was is he happy. You cannot be happy if you are not competing for the title or for the Champions League.
“The aim is for every top player to do that. For now he is concentrated on his recovery the next period is important for him and Man Utd to try to get into the Champions League then the European Championship and then we will see.”
However, Raiola’s comments haven’t gone down well at United with boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer declaring that “Paul is our player and not Mino’s”.
Pogba’s future at Old Trafford has been uncertain since the midfielder insisted he was looking for a “new challenge” last summer, with his comments following United’s failure to qualify for the Champions League.
Recent reports have suggested that United are willing to sell Pogba for £100m at the end of the season, with chief Ed Woodward wanting the player’s future settled before this summer’s European Championship, which starts on June 12.
Woodward is believed to have reassured Solskjaer that money from Pogba’s sale will be reinvested into his squad and that he can sign two midfielders to replace the Frenchman.
Although Rabiot now appears unlikely to be involved in any future deal, United are still keeping tabs on Leicester City midfielder James Maddison and Aston Villa talisman Jack Grealish as replacements if they choose to sell Pogba.
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